Even if you don’t know much about marijuana — other than the fact that pretty much anything containing THC gets you high — you’re undoubtedly aware that April 20 is a important date for stoners, MMJ users, or anyone else who’s down with Mary Jane.
Thanks to the significance of the number 420 in pot culture, it’s a big day for marijuana-themed events and celebrations around the world. That includes many such shindigs happening around the Phoenix area on Wednesday, April 20, at local smoke shops, medical marijuana dispensaries, and even some bars and music venues, including the following 11 events.
Arizona Event Center
The many benefits of medical marijuana will be celebrated during the 420 Blaze It Fest, an evening-long event aimed at raising awareness of MMJ. Local dispensaries and smoke shops will have booths at the event, a pro-MMJ doctor will provide certifications from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., and various activities (including carnival games and giveaways) are planned. Local reggae acts The Black Bottom Lighters and Ras Linga are scheduled to perform, as are the rappers of Bodega Brovas and Miss DJ MJ. The event runs from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. General admission is $25.26 and a VIP package featuring a variety of perks is $159.24.
Bud’s Glass Joint
A slew of artists from across Arizona — including Styles Torch Life, Frank Pipes, Juliea Baker, Desi B., Farmer, and HP Loveglass — will participate in a collaborative glass-blowing demonstration outside of this Roosevelt Row smoke shop during its 420 Flame Off. Meanwhile, local bands and musicians like Jerusafunk, Heart Break Club, Slowpoke, Hotrock Supajoint, Dillon Ruggiero, and DJ SupaVaisa will do their thing. The free event runs from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. (Full disclosure: Bud’s Glass Joint is co-owned by employees of Phoenix New Times.)
As one might expect, this chain of pot-themed sub shops will host 420 Extravaganzas at each of its three locations around the Valley. The biggest one will happen over in Tempe, which will feature music from DJs and live bands like Manic Monkey, contests, and giveaways. Each shop will also offer a $4.20 deal that includes a nug-sized sandwich, chips, a drink, and a collectible “Cheba disk” (aka Frisbee). The celebrations start at 10 a.m.
More than a dozen local hip-hop artists — including such weed-friendly rappers as Twansac, Chilee Powdah, Greedy Gonzalez, and Denzel Davis — will perform during the 420 Music Fest at the Mesa music venue. The lineup also features Litl-A, Nena Rosey, Ravenz, Gboi, Rudeen Machine, City Life, Capazona, and others. Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show starts at 9 p.m. Tickets are $15.
Cobra Arcade Bar
A special 420 edition of Cobra’s weekly Grid City Retro Wave dance party will take place on Wednesday evening and include prizes and giveaways, drink specials, and DJ sessions by residents Borisimo and Rey C. The sounds and celebration starts at 8 p.m. and there’s no cover.
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The crew behind the fittingly titled local hip-hop night The Blunt Club will join forces with Crescent Ballroom resident DJ Sean Watson for the 420-themed party Nice Dreams - A Celebration of Music & Medicine. Indie pop star Luna Aura will headline the event, which will also feature spin sessions by such DJs as Tricky T, Sean Watson, and Oh Allen. A live art session by The Blunt Club’s Adam “Dumperfoo” Dumper will also take place and local dispensaries like Mary’s Medicinals and the Herbal Wellness Center will be on hand to educate patrons on the benefits of medical marijuana. The event starts at 9 p.m. with a $5 cover.
Last Exit Live
Denver-born folk rock/jam band A-Mac DZ is scheduled to perform during the 420 Party at Last Exit Live along with local acts The Wiley Ones and Jay Allan and the Uncommon Good. The event kicks off at 8 p.m. and admission is $10 at the door.
Midnight Hookah Lounge
Local rap veterans Hannibal Leq, Noble Gentry, and Rum Nitty will be one of several hip-hop artists that will spit rhymes during the third annual Smokefest at this North Phoenix hookah spot. Comedian Marlon Da Gr8 hosts the event, which kicks off at 7 p.m. and includes free food and giveaways. Admission is $10.
You can take a long, strange trip back to the era of doobies and disco at this North Phoenix smoke shop, as its 420 festivities will feature a “Flashback to the '70s" theme. (Bell-bottoms are optional.) Free food from Cheba Hut will be provided, glass-blowing demos and live art will be conducted, and a rolling contest is planned. More than $3,000 worth of prizes, merch, and shwag will be given away during a “mega raffle” at 4:20 p.m. and 7:10 p.m. (entry tickets are $1 each). Admission is free.