What Exactly Is 420 Anyway?

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Maybe you celebrated “420” on April 20th, or maybe you didn’t. Regardless, we’re sure you’ve heard the term before, especially if you live on the west coast! This now-popular “holiday” actually has a fascinating history you should know.

What is it?

While a lot of people treat 420 as a large “smoke-in” day or an excuse to smoke marijuana at a certain time, over the last few years, it has become a rally of sorts for the legalization of cannabis. Celebrities, community speakers, even doctors, have been known to speak up for legalization at these special events. This is due to studies proving cannabis helps with medically related conditions.

How did it start?

You’ve likely heard at least one rumour about how 420 started. Some of our favourite made-up stories include it being in honour of Bob Marley, it’s police code for marijuana and the ever-popular tale that it started in Holland as a sort of “tea time”. Well, ignore all those stories because we’re about to tell you the truth.
Back in the fall of 1971, a group of California high school students calling themselves “The Waldos” got hold of a map leading to a large cannabis patch in a forest nearby. Every afternoon for a few weeks the group would meet outside their school — at 4:20 pm — to smoke marijuana before going on their daily search. Their code to remind each other in the hallways was 420. They never found this supposed large cannabis patch in the forest, but they continued to use the phrase “420” whenever it was time for them to meet up and smoke.
The legendary band, The Grateful Dead, was managed by a family member of the Waldos who managed to get them backstage access to their show. They often used the term “420” and it soon spread among the community until it gained popularity everywhere. April 20 (4/20) has now been declared the “official” marijuana holiday to rally.

Why should I celebrate?

It has become a tradition to hold controlled 420 celebrations in most cities across Canada and that shouldn’t change even with marijuana legislation occurring this summer. Bringing awareness to the benefits of medical marijuana will continue to become of utmost importance to a lot of organizers. Watch out for these organized events in your area so you can lend your support.

How should I celebrate?

You can celebrate 420 any way you choose to! Gather a small group of friends, or advocate for medical marijuana at one of these larger rallies. Many people who are medical marijuana advocates do not smoke marijuana but like to provide information on the healing benefits of embracing cannabis in other ways.

Learn more!

At Gulf Island Organics, we love raising awareness for the amazing ways cannabis can improve your health. We’re happy to answer any questions about marijuana, what health conditions marijuana can provide relief from, figure out the best ways to ingest cannabis and to help you decide on exactly what you need. Stop by our store in downtown Victoria or contact us online, by email at info@gulfislandorganics.ca or by phone at 778-265-5919.

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