Nimbin MardiGrass 2005

The Nimbin Hemp Embassy organisers of the annual MardiGrass Cannabis Law Reform weekend say it was probably the biggest crowd ever though nobody was counting! “The rubbish skips were all full by Sunday morning which has never happened before and that’s a fair indication.”
Schapelle Corby’s influence was everywhere over the weekend: yellow ribbons, theatre in the rally, banners, and she was quite possibly one of the reasons for such a big turnout in the rally. “She and the Bali nine have certainly put the war on drugs back on the agenda, and I have no doubt the majority of Australians are ready for cannabis law reform. It’s no big deal, especially for the new generations who are a wake up to the pharmaceutical giants controlling everybody’s method of pain relief.”

“The sooner we normalize drug use, because it is normal, the sooner we can start practically addressing problems like psychosis, people smoking too young and too much and mixing with tobacco, and so on. The huge alienation of so many people and suffering created by prohibition is going to take several generations to undo; the sooner we start the better.” said Michael Balderstone, from the Hemp Embassy.

“What other substance festival weekend would be so peaceful, have virtually no accidents or violence, have the biggest gathering of Aboriginal people in Nimbin since white man arrived and generally have everyone walking around in a calm and happy atmosphere? A Rum festival? Beer? No way. Cannabis is an extraordinary herb!”

“Our ticket sales were down we think because there were so many different events on and the free entertainment was so good many never ventured into Peace Park for the Hemp Olympix. We decided the talks and forums should be free of charge and they were well attended. So long as we cover costs we are happy, and we are particularly grateful to Lismore City Council for their support with rubbish recycling and security.”

The police statistics from their special operations will be interesting. How many accidents from all those “drug drivers?” What was the percentage of drink drivers they caught?

MardiGrass is a difficult weekend for police, who made a few arrests but clearly made safety their priority. The crowd gave them a big cheer at the rally for their good attitude in the main. When they breathalized the entire 53 Kombis in the convoy they were extremely polite!

The MardiGrass crowd of “criminals” are much better behaved than they are given credit for. Pot smokers are generally very aware of the environment and responsible in their actions.

There are plans afoot to walk the Big Joint, which is 12 metres long, to Canberra after next years MardiGrass. It’s time to put cannabis law reform on the political agenda in the capital and that will take a bit of effort we reckon, unless the pineapple upside down cake cook from Ballina Council moves into the Parliament House kitchen!”

The Marijuana Music Awards winners were the Spliffmasters in the recorded section, and the Herballists, who flew in from Philadelphia, won the live section.

The men’s Bong throw was won by Stefan from Austria with a throw of 39.45 metres, Tezza won the women’s with 30.13 metres. Local Peter from Coffee Camp won the Grower’s Iron Person event, Lucy the women’s.

Joint Rolling Gold Medal for the Speed Roll this year was won by Smurf in 22 seconds for the standard 3 paper and filter, a new record. Bob the Builder won the Creative Roll with a model of Schapelle Corby behind bars. When the joint was lit the jail burnt down and she was freed!

For further info contact:
Michael Balderstone,
Hemp Embassy spokesperson
02)6689 1842