CANNABIS CULTURE – Seattle Hempfest, the world’s largest annual “cannabis re-legalization protestival”, is less than a week away, from August 21-22.
Organizers say this years’ event, which stretches across three Seattle waterfront parks and features live music and speeches from well-known cannabis activists, will focus on “responsible use and harm reduction”.
“Hempfest is addressing the issue of responsible use this year because we have both an opportunity and a responsibility to guarantee that everyone in our audience, especially youth, gets a balanced message,” said Hempfest Executive Director Vivian McPeak. “There is a conversation America needs to be having regarding cannabis. Only half of that conversation is about changing the law. The other half addresses how we can effectively integrate cannabis into mainstream America, and that part of the conversation involves responsible use and harm reduction.”
Admission to Seattle Hempfest is free but, due to funding worries, a suggested $10 donation is being requested by organizers to help offset the estimated $350,000 operating cost.
The traditionally bustling event, which has grown to include over 300,000 attendees a year, features speakers and performers on several stages and hundreds of vendor booths selling t-shirts, pipes, bongs, jewelry, books, magazines and other pot-themed paraphernalia.
This year’s roster of over 80 speakers includes Cannabis Culture‘s own Jodie Emery, NORML director Allen St. Pierre, Washington State Senator Jeanne Kohl-Welles and ganja-growing guru Ed Rosenthal (click here for the massive list) and musical acts like Green Jelly, The Herbivores, and Grammy-nominated hip hop artist Skee-Lo and Layzie Bone from Bone Thugs-n-Harmony (full schedule).
Seattle Hempfest was started 19 years ago and is run by an all-volunteer staff. The event spans three Seattle waterfront parks: Elliott Bay Park (North Entrance), Myrtle Edwards Park, and Olympic Sculpture Park (South Entrance). Click here for a map.
According to organizers, Hempfest 2010 is dedicated to late ‘Hemperor’ Jack Herer, author of the pivotal cannabis book, The Emperor Wears No Clothes, who spoke at last year’s event before passing away in April. A new reprint of his book will be available at this year’s event.
Cannabis Culture was on-location last year and will be in the crowd for this year’s festivities. FREE MARC T-Shirts and other CC and Pot-TV merchandise will be offered for sale at Ed Rosenthal’s booth.
Click here to visit Seattle Hempfest’s official website