Marijuana: William Breathes's top picks for the 4/20 holi-daze
Have you checked your calendar lately?
The annual 4/20 weekend is nearly upon us, and we can already smell the smoke in the air in the Mile High City.
Okay, maybe that's just the smoke from our pot critic's desk.
But that smoke signals an ever-growing list of cannabis-centric events in Denver next week.
Here's just the start.
Thursday, April 17
Put yourself in the right frame of mind for the weekend with some bowls and laughs with comedian Andy Haynes's Midnight Run at the Oriental Theater, 4335 West 44th Avenue. Haynes, who's been featured on Comedy Central and Jimmy Fallon, has put together a pot-centric set wherein he gets nice and ripped before stepping on stage "in the warm embrace of the green Muppet arms that we call flower." The night kicks off at 8 p.m. and runs late; for more information and tickets, visit theorientaltheater.com.
If old-school stoner comedy is your thing, join legends Cheech Marin and Tommy Chong at the Fillmore for a night of laughs and music with classic groove-rockers War. You'd better have some green handy, and we don't mean weed: Tickets start at a whopping $112 for general admission. For more, head to ticketmaster.com. Continue for the top 4/20 events on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
The largest fest connected with 4/20 happens to be the cheapest: On April 18, the free Mile High Festibowl will fill four venues around Denver with more than sixty bands, two dozen comedians and live painting, glass blowing, block printing and wire wrapping. The lineup is too huge to list here, but musical highlights include Potato Pirates, Lucinda Tela, Adder, Truckasaurus and Slaughterhouse Rootz. There will also be plenty of live standup and improv/sketch comedy from The Fine Gentleman's Club, Sylvan Productions, Werewolf Radar, Tongue Stuff and more. For more information, check out facebook.com/mouthbombrecords.
If you're going into the weekend without a reliable smoking device, head to the Denver Mart, site of the BIGGalleria Glass Exhibition and Expo on April 18. Although the expo actually starts on April 16, the first two days are open to head-shop owners and vendors only; the public will be allowed inside starting on Friday. Expect the largest collection of handblown glass that you have ever seen, with live demos from Bandhu Dunham, BMFT, Buck, Burtoni, Coyle, Eusheen, Salt, Shack, Snic, Steve Bates, Worm and more. Pick up a sick custom piece direct from the artist and save yourself some coin for an extra gram of shatter for the weekend. Find tickets and more info at biggalleria.com. Continue for the top 4/20 events on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Dabroots Dab the Rockies runs from 4 p.m. on Friday, April 18, through Sunday, April 20, at the Darkstar Lounge, 1630 Federal Boulevard. The 21-and-up party will have an outdoor puffing area, live music, grow seminars, a ganja Easter Egg hunt and tons of free samples. Dabroots has even set up a free shuttle, the Rasta Bus, with stops all over downtown. For more information and tickets, head to dabrootsdenver.com.
Daze on the Green, hosted by the hippies at Quixote's True Blue, takes over Sculpture Park at the Denver Performing Arts Complex with some amazing funk from Karl Denson's Tiny Universe, Dumpstaphunk, Kyle Hollingsworth Band, Stir Fried and more. The festival kicks off at 4:20 p.m. and ends at 11 p.m. April 18, 19 and 20. For tickets and a schedule of artist times, check out dazeonthegreen420.com.
Denver Kush Club and MusicMarauders are throwing a three-night party dubbed Festival 64: A Celebration of Legalization at the newly expanded 1up Colfax. Join Signal Path, Tiger Party, Ultraviolet Hippopotamus and Chrome Domes for three nights of getting stoned, playing video games and dancing to music: the perfect stoner trio. For tickets and a schedule of events, go to the-1up.com. Continue for the top 4/20 events on Saturday and Sunday.
One of the main reasons that Denver has become ground zero for 4/20 in the U.S. is the annual 4/20 event in Civic Center Park that has drawn tens of thousands of people for a largely peaceful toke-up and political rally. The tone of this year's two-day celebration has shifted from activism to entertainment, and organizers have moved from no-name local bands to national headlining artists including Wyclef Jean, B.O.B., the Expendables, Zion I and MTHDS. Better yet, the event is still free to the public. But unlike in past years, when mass, open cannabis use was one of the main reasons to attend, organizers are now asking people to be respectful of Colorado law prohibiting marijuana use in public. At least, that's what they have to say in order to stay on the good side of Denver City Council, whose members have regularly voiced concerns about the size and scope of the rally. For more information, including a rough schedule of events, head to 420rally.org.
After you've hit the Civic Center, head to the Denver Mart, the new location of the two-day High Times Cannabis Cup. The setting may be new, but you can expect the same activities -- including a plethora of marijuana product vendors and a wide-open area for people to openly smoke herb and dab oil well into the night. Tickets are selling out and two-day passes are apparently no longer available. But single-day, $40 tickets are still for sale online at eventbrite.com. Continue for the top 4/20 events on Saturday and Sunday.
High Times is also throwing a pair of concerts at Red Rocks, headlined on Saturday night by Slightly Stoopid and on Sunday by Snoop Dogg and Wiz Khalifa. Though smoking in public is technically illegal, we fully expect to be able to see the clouds of smoke above the monoliths from Denver. Tickets for both shows are sold out according to redrocksonline.com, so your best bet is Craigslist or StubHub.
Here's a bonus suggestion for next weekend: Remember, driving under the influence of marijuana is illegal, and cops are likely to be cracking down the way they do on large, alcohol-fueled holidays like Labor Day and New Year's Eve. If you're getting too stoned to make it home and can't get an Uber/Lyft/taxi ride, get a hotel. And if you want to puff tough in style in that hotel, check out the deals going on in 4/20-friendly hotel rooms at an undisclosed (as of yet) hotel in downtown through Denver Dab Hotel. King rooms start at $259, and each comes with a custom oil rig and use of an electronic titanium-nail vaporizer. For more, visit denverdabhotel.com.
Got any more events that we missed here? Let us know in the comments below.
More from our Marijuana archive circa April 4: "Photos: Top five things marijuana tourist Michael Hancock will learn visiting Amsterdam."
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