If your stoner friends seem to have an extra glint in their bloodshot eyes lately, it's probably because this Saturday happens to be April 20. In other words, it's 4/20, the day on which marijuana lovers of the world celebrate and pay tribute to their favorite plant, likely by burning a few.
Because the occasion falls on a weekend this year, there's seemingly twice the number of weed-themed parties or other events at bars, medical marijuana dispensaries, smoke shops, and other locations devoted to cannabis happening around Metro Phoenix. That includes a few shindigs a few taking place a few days prior on Thursday, April 18, and Friday, April 19. If you're looking for a place to party after lighting up, check out the following list of 4/20 events.
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Camelback Sahara Hotel Three days of activities will be offered during the AZ 420 Festival and Grower's Cup at this upscale midtown hotel starting on Friday, April 19, and running until Sunday, April 21. In addition to an impressive lineup of rap, hip-hop, rock, and reggae acts, the festival will feature glass blowing, live art, a farmer's market, prize raffles, massage therapists, tattoo artists, a dispensary job fair, doctors giving on-site referrals, the finals of the Arizona Growers Cup, and guest speakers discussing a number of medical marijuana topics. Gates open at noon each day. General admission is $24. Full details are available on the event website.
Martini Ranch Local bands Fred Green, Daughters of Fission, Bionic Jive, and VEX will celebrate "420 Eve" on Friday, April 19, with performances include varying degrees of rap, rock, and rap-rock. A number of "free goodies" from Headquarters will also be given out. The event starts at 9 p.m. Admission is $5.
Mesa Amphitheatre Punk, indie pop, electronica, psychobilly, reggae, and old fashioned rock 'n' roll. These are some of the varied sounds you'll hear being blasted from the Mesa Amphitheatre on Saturday, April 20, when online alt-rock station KUKQ and the Phoenix New Times resurrect a Phoenix festival tradition, That Damn Show.
The all-day affair at the landmark outdoor concert venue will be headlined by punk legends Bad Religion and Face to Face, as well as electro-rock act Awolnation, indie/post-punk revivalists The Faint, NoCal psychobill freaks Tiger Army, and the pop-punkers of Fenix*TX.
Several local and touring bands are also scheduled to perform at That Damn Show and a fleet of local food trucks -- including Liberty Biscuits, Emerson Fry Bread, and Buzz N Bees -- will also be on hand for those concertgoers interested in feasting on something besides the non-stop buffet of rock. Gates open at noon. General admission is $35, VIP access is $125.
4:19 - Got A Minute? Matt Dunn, Sinabyte, Dysfunktion, and other local DJs are scheduled to perform at this Four Twenty-themed desert dance party on Friday, April 19, that will run all night and take place somewhere in the wilderness surrounding the Valley. In addition to all the psytrance and hardcore beats being dished out, organizers will also serve free oreos and milk at 4 a.m. The party starts at 10 p.m. Admission is $7 per person, $25 per carload. Hit up the event's Facebook page for more details.
Paraphernalia Boutique This North Phoenix shop will be going tropical in honor of Four Twenty when it throws a "High-Waiian Luau" on Saturday, April 20. The party starts at 7 p.m. and will boast food and drinks, live music, DJs, a glass blower, prizes, raffles, giveaways, discount on various products, and more. Admission is free.
Sky High Smoke Shop A 420 Festival is scheduled to take place at this Tempe establishment and will feature free shirts and stickers, raffles for products, a number of discounts throughout the day on selected items, and barbecue food from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. for those making purchases. Doors open at 10 a.m.
Headquarters The long-running Tempe smokeshop will offer a wealth of free items, some which will require a purchase, during its Four Twenty festivities starting at 10 a.m. on Saturday, April 20. The list includes free copies of High Times, posters, stickers, butane, lighters, wraps, and a few other things a smoker could want when burning one, as well as free munchies (natch) for afterwards.
Bud's Glass Joint Patrons who happen to be of legal drinking age can score free beer during Bud's "420 Blow Out" on Saturday, April 20, as well as discounts on items (excluding tobacco), free raffles for $1,000 in prizes, and more. Supa Joint will also perform and No Stress Glass will conduct glass-blowing demos. (Full disclosure: Bud's is part-owned by employess of Phoenix New Times.) Runs from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Admission is free.
Cheba Hut Speaking of such things, all three Valley locations of Cheba Hut will be hosting individual versions of the chain's annual "420 Party" on Saturday, April 20. Live music, giveaways, contests, and free frisbees will be offered at each. Special meal deals of a nug-sized sandwich, chips, and a drink will be available for $4.20. Starts at 10 a.m. Phoenix College
A tongue-in-cheek look at the so-called "evils" of marijuana use (circa 1936) will be presented for public consumption via a staging of Reefer Madness: The Musical at PC's John Paul Theatre. Based on the vintage propaganda exploitation film of cult cinema renowned, albeit with a musical bent, it will offer a cautionary look at how weed can cause upstanding young Americans to fall prey to a "hysterical downward spiral filled with evil jazz music, sex and violence." Performances take place at 7:30 p.m. nightly from Thursday, April 18, to Saturday, April 20. Admission is Admission $20 for adults, $15 for seniors, and $10 for students.
Yucca Tap Room What better way to gear up for the annual celebration of Four Twenty than hanging out at the weekly Blunt Club (see what we did there?) in Tempe on Thursday, April 19. Adam "Dumperfoo" Dumper will sling paint during his usual live art throwdown, DJ Pickster One will be on the decks, and hip-hop artists Trek Life and Adder will perform. The event starts at 9 p.m. Admission is free.
Green Thumb Academy This CenPho dispensary will hold its grand opening celebration on Saturday, April 20, which will feature free gifts, tours, and meds.
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Cadillac Ranch Need a place to hang after attending That Damn Show on Saturday, April 20? Head for the "420 Party" at Cadillac Ranch in Tempe where DJ Mr. Eaton will perform and the bar will serve $3 Coors Light Drafts, $4 Smirnoff cocktails, $4 Fireball shots, and other specials. Starts a 9 p.m. Admission is free.
Up in Smoke Enjoy art, food, live music, and glass-blowing demonstrations at this Tempe boutique starting at 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 20. KWSS will perform a live broadcast and onsite patient certification will take place. Admission is free.