The highest of holidays, 4/20, is nearly upon us, and this year’s celebrations are hitting extra hard thanks to a historic wave of legalizations coinciding with the post-vaxx party rush. It’s kinda uncanny how perfect this timing turned out to be? New York finally legalized weed in late March after years of failed attempts, thanks to Governor Cuomo’s desperate bid for post-sex scandal public goodwill and the state’s dire need for fiscal stimulus in the face of record-breaking budget deficits. (Think about how fucking ironic it is that legalizing cannabis is now good PR for politicians while also funding the police, after decades of the exact opposite under the War on Drugs?! I’m laughing through my tears.) Euphoric energy from New York is now whipping the weed industry into overdrive. The vibe is very much: BIG DADDY HAS ARRIVED.
Riding this political current is the post-vaxx party rush as we emerge back into the world. A couple months ago, I was discussing what to do for 4/20 with my homies at Stoner’s Night LA, and we weren’t sure if in-person parties would even be a possibility! Now, I’m stacking my calendar with back-to-back weed brunches and a secret music festival with stoner king Flying Lotus (more on all that in a bit…). What’s interesting is that the bacchanalian orgies many were expecting after the vaccine hit aren’t really happening—yet. The mood is more reserved and trepidatious, like we’re cautiously warming up to the idea of socializing again. Instead of throwing our hands up like AYY LET’S GET LIT, it’s like we’re holding each gingerly and asking, “Am I OK? Are you OK? What the fuck just happened?”
This is one of the many reasons why I’m excited about the future of weed parties. Cannabis is a very different social lubricant from alcohol, as I’ve come to realize through my party + crazy social experiment Weed Rave. It heightens sensitivity to the emotional states of both yourself and those around you, rather than numbing everything into a blur. (The extreme end of this is paranoia, so microdosing + CBD + gentler cannabinoids like delta-8 are key, as we touched on in our interview with cannabis social drink Wunder last week.) The intimacy and introspection that weed brings to a party is a different kind of energy that makes is well-suited, I think, to the need for post-pandemic healing in spaces of social reunification. And with cannabis social clubs and lounges on the horizon, I can’t wait to see what comes next.
So! That was a long-winded way of saying 4/20 looks extra cute this year, from parties on virtual weed farms to IRL raves in (where else?) Miami. Here are my top picks of where to bake, blaze and boogie:
MY WAKE + BAKE WEED BRUNCH! - SUNDAY, 11AM PST (VIRTUAL)
I’m dipping my toes back into throwing parties again with a virtual weed brunch this Sunday! It’s called WAKING + BAKING and we are literally going to bake with cannabis lol—an organic chemist is gonna teach us how to make ~stoned scones~ infused with gummies from a popular edibles brand called PLUS. (This power brunch is the launch party for their new hash gummies.) This is my first time conceptualizing + producing an event for a weed brand (I usually do my own thing and get sponsors)—it’s a direction I kinda want to explore more? I’m also stoked about doing a party around hash, an old-school form of cannabis (like, Baudelaire had a hash club) that is still popular in Europe, Asia and the Middle East—and is finally getting its due in America. Obviously, there’s also going to be a dance party: my pal Masha from LA’s Dig Deeper will be playing stoner disco. RSVP here.
GLASS HOUSE FEST - 4/20, 7PM PST (VIRTUAL + IRL IN LA)
I cannot be more stoked that the first concert I’m going to in more than a year is going to be a weedy festival with stoner maestro FlyLo at a secret location in LA (I’m hoping it’s a grow house). The socially-distanced festival is a collab between weed brand Glass House Farms and Jam in the Van, a solar-powered mobile recording studio that livestreams (mostly rock) concerts to its YouTube channel. Sadly the fest sold out quick but it’ll be streamed live here, and you can also take a virtual tour of a weed farm! BTW I’m obsessed with this “influencer kit” that they just dropped off, it even included a tiny hammer to break the glass lol - the weedfluencer life is wild…
WEEDMAPS - EVEN HIGHER TOGETHER - 4/20, 4:20PM PST (VIRTUAL)
Weedmaps, a popular cannabis delivery + editorial platform, is throwing this virtual 420 RAGER hosted by (who else?) Snoop. A$AP Rocky and Jhené Aiko are headlining, alongside a DJ set by Tokimonsta, Wiz Khalifa hosting a smoke + skate sesh with pro skaters, G-Eazy talking about self-care (lol), and a lot more. This is probably the biggest, and definitely the most ambitious, virtual weed event ever?? Don’t miss the Talib Kweli-moderated panel on criminal justice reform + equity in cannabis, hosted by social justice orgs Last Prisoner Project and WM TEAL (Together for Equity, Access & Legalization).
III JOINTS (4/20) - IRL IN MIAMI
My Miami raver sis Gami has been tipping me off about all these local stoner crews throwing the sickest weed festivals and raves—like III Joints, a 4/20 celebration organized by the same people behind the music festival III Points. This year’s party is happening at a 6000-person (!!!) open-air venue in Miami called Space Park, and there’s going to be three Sativa, Indica, and Hybrid stages. I don’t know many of the names on this lineup but like…“Resin Advisers,” “Ashtray Kutcher,” “Kief Richards”—come on, they’re incredible. (Gami is also DJing a real rave later that night but I’m not sure how much I can blow it up, so you should just DM her if you’re in Miami!)
CALIVA 420 VARIETY SHOW (4/20, 4:20PM) - VIRTUAL
I was in San Jose last week for a story about Jay Z’s weed brand, and I stopped by this mind-boggling, industrial-size weed production facility run by Califoria’s biggest cannabis conglomerate (which HOV is a major stakeholder of). The front of the warehouse had a dispensary where I grabbed a flyer with all these virtual events hosted Caliva, a brand you’ll probably know if you’ve ever stepped into a dispensary—they’re everywhere. So that is how I found out about their 4/20 virtual series, which included cannabis-and-cardio workouts, strain tasting sessions, and joint rolling workshops. The 4/20 special is hosted by Clayton Ferris, a comedian who does a podcast about what “healthy” is and redefining the healthcare status quo.
COMMUNITY BREAD x DREAMACCESS TV - (4/20, TWITCH)
This isn’t technically a weed event but I am so pumped about this new project that’s debuting on 4/20: a queer TV network for ravers called Dreamaccess TV (“for freaks like us” says its bio). The Twitch channel also describes itself as “devoted to the odd and quirky, made with love from people who grew up too close to power lines”—I love it already. The 4/20 launch is with Brooklyn rave-streamers Community Bread, and will feature sets from Bergsonist, Cy x, Ghorba, as well as an interview with Heidi Sabertooth about her new synth initiative to broaden access to synths, modular gear and other EQ for queer and POC artists. Dreamaccess’ trailer promises upcoming shows like “Seth Speaks” (Seth Troxler as a spiritual guru?), “Criptozoology with Matias Aguayo”, and “Misery Index” with Drumcell and Hiroko Luis Flores. This is an early scoop—the channel hasn’t even been officially announced yet—but watch this space cuz shit is about to blow up!
Ty for this guide💜