Although it won't be quite the stampede of Black Friday, 4/20 is expected to generate some serious revenue in Colorado dispensaries.
The four days between April 17-20 provided Colorado dispensaries with three of the state's highest-selling days in 2015, according to a recent report from BDS Analytics, which says that the average sales amount in that time span was a little north of $4 million per day — almost double the $2.2 million average throughout the rest of the month.
“We knew, of course, that 4/20 is a retail bonanza for cannabis brands, dispensaries, grows and more,” said BDS Analytics founder and CEO Roy Bingham in a statement accompanying the report. “Our data reveal its powerful impact."
So, how much herb is predicted to exchange hands on the holiday weekend this year, and how do prices compare between last year and now? Here are some highlights from the report:
Sales in Colorado are expected to exceed $5 million per day from April 15 to April 20.
This year's edition of 4/20 is projected to generate around $1 million more per day than on last year's holiday weekend, with all varieties of cannabis product sales expected to increase. Last year, only cannabis-infused butter and massage oils saw dips in sales on 4/20
The price of flower is on the decline.
Since April 20, 2015, the average price-per-gram of marijuana flower has dropped 13 percent, from $6.67 to $5.57 today. Keep in mind, this is not the average price of a single gram for sale at a recreational dispensary in Colorado. The report uses numbers from both medical and recreational dispensaries, which sell most of their flower in eighths, half-ounces and other bulkier amounts.
Edibles continue to rise in popularity and price.
Unlike flower and concentrates, the average pot-infused baked good has risen 18 cents, from $8.02 to $8.18. The price of candy bars has increased 45 cents, to an average of $16.27 per unit. In BDS's last report, the edibles market in Colorado grew three out of four quarters in 2015, with 63 percent of edibles sales attributed to baked goods and candy bars.
BDS says the growing size of the legal marijuana industry is most responsible for the expected rise in sales year over year. Colorado pot shops saw an average of 30 percent more sales in January and February of 2016, compared to the same months last year, according to the data firm. There are now over 200 dispensaries, medical and recreational, in the Denver metro area alone.
Bingham says BDS surveys around 20 percent of Colorado's marijuana dispensaries and product manufacturers, giving the company an operational sample size to make estimates for the rest of the industry.
In June 2015, a poll by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment reported that 13.6 of Colorado adults over the age of eighteen identified as marijuana users. As of February of 2015, Colorado's Medical Marijuana Registry had 108,675 registered patients.
Keep reading for marijuana and 4/20 events:
Let the 4/20 festivities begin! World Cannabis Week kicks off on Friday, April 15, and runs through Thursday, April 21. Locals and tourists alike can enjoy cannabis cooking classes and dispensary grow tours, as well as pre- and post- 4/20 events, with pot-friendly shuttles going and to and from your hotel and your desired location. Learn more about World Cannabis Week schedules and rates at the tour's home page. 21+
Also lighting up early is the Denver 4/20 Fest, which runs from Friday, April 15, to Sunday, April 17, at the GlitterDome Events Center. The festival will feature a live performance by Lil Flip and sets from multiple DJs and comedians; there will also be industry vendors and pot-friendly shuttles to and from the complex. Tickets are $15, but anyone with a valid marijuana industry badge gets in for free. 21+
From Saturday, April 16, through Wednesday, April 20, marijuana club iBake is throwing a five-day party in honor of 4/20 at its locations in Denver and Englewood, with live music, outdoor and warehouse smoking areas, vendor booths and VIP areas. Tickets are $52.24 for admission to one location, and $77.87 for admission to both. 21+
One of Denver's most popular 4/20 events will be held on Saturday, April 16, when the Official 4/20 Rally begins at Civic Center Park. Running from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., one of the largest cultural and political events dedicated to cannabis in the country will feature a concert headlined by Lil Wayne and Wiz Khalifa, and there will be dozens of vendors with free merch. PAX Vaporizers also recently told us to be on the lookout for its truck at 4:20 p.m., which may or may not be full of free pizza and other swag. Admission is free, but VIP and backstage passes are available for purchase.
Declaration Brewing is throwing a 4/20 pre-party at 6 p.m. on Saturday, April 16. The party will feature a one-of-a-kind, 12-foot pot leaf, fire and LED performances, stilt walkers and a comedy show at 9 p.m. Admission is free.
Although there will be no expo or consumption area, the High Times Colorado Cannabis Cup competition will still be held from 6 to 11 p.m. on Tuesday, April 19, at the Ogden Theatre. There will be an awards show for Colorado's best cannabis products and performances by Cypress Hill, Action Bronson, George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic and more. Tickets start at $65.
Enjoy the night before at 4/20 Eve on the Rocks – a concert headlined by Method Man & Redman with Ghostface Killah and Raekwon – on Tuesday, April 19, at Red Rocks Amphitheatre. The show starts at 6 p.m. and features Collie Buddz, Joey BadA$$, Stick Figure, Dizzy Wright, The Underachievers and Jarren Benton as opening acts. Tickets start at $35.
Return to the GlitterDome Events Center on the big day for 4/20 at the GlitterDome, taking place on Wednesday, April 20, from noon to midnight. Food trucks, a pop-up smoke shop, vendor tables and more highlight the celebration, with performances by Planes, Sysco Yola, Staxx and Ransteez and Paul Wall. Anyone with a valid marijuana industry badge gets half off admission.
From 1 to 6 p.m. on Wednesday, April 20, celebrate 4/20 at the Capitol Hill Cannabis Activists Assembly at Civic Center Park, where activists will be loudly voicing their concerns about proposed limits on THC in retail products, social consumption, plant counts and other social pot issues.
The University of Denver is hosting a Marijuana Summit on the science, biology and laws surrounding marijuana from noon to 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 20, at the Sturm College of Law. Attendees can choose two of four workshops in the fields of law, business, psychology and biology; admission is free for DU students, $60 for DU alumni and $75 for all others.
It wouldn't be 4/20 in Denver without free dabs, and that's exactly what Rigs 4 Us is supplying all comers at the first Colorado Cup cannabis competition, from 2 to 11 p.m. on Wednesday, April 20. Growers, dispensaries and medical caregivers will submit their best flower and concentrates for judging; it costs $40 to enter the competition. Admission and dabs are free, but you can be a contest judge for $35. 21+
The 5280 Glass Showcase runs from 4 p.m. to midnight on Wednesday, April 20, at the NATIV Hotel. For around $44, enjoy art and live music, twenty draft beers, cocktails and refreshments, as well as the work of over sixty Colorado-based glassblowers.
Enjoy a Puff, Pass & Pottery class with local potter Jessa Decker-Smith on Wednesday, April 20, from 7 to 9 p.m. at the studios at 2087 South Grant Street. Part of the Puff, Pass & Paint curriculum, this two-hour sesh will teach you how to make an ashtray for all those doobs you smoke. Tickets are $55 for locals and $63 for non-locals to ship pottery out of town. Firing is included— but pick up your pottery no more than ten days after class. Bring your own cannabis (and booze). 21+
Enjoy beverages and scientific pot conversation during another session of Frank Talk: The Science of Cannabis on Thursday, April 21, from 6 to 9 p.m. at Fort Greene. After enjoying happy-hour drinks from 5 to 6:30 p.m., learn why fungicide-resistant powdery mildew has become a problem for growers with Frank Conrad, lab director of the cannabis testing facility Colorado Green Labs. An additional speaker, Confident Cannabis CEO Steve Albarran, will mythbust favorite cannabis classifications. Admission is free.
The National Cannabis Industry Association is holding its Colorado Cannabis Caucus — a networking event scheduled to update cannabis professionals on industry and political developments, both nationally and locally — on Thursday, April 21, from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at City Hall. Admission is free for NCIA members and $50 for non-members.
Know of an event that should be in the Cannabis Calendar? Send it to email@example.com.
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.