Cannaval: Where Lucha Libre, Cannabis and Carnivals Collide

San Diego wrestler Leo Cañedo (bottom) will wrestle against the luchadores in Phoenix this Saturday.
San Diego wrestler Leo Cañedo (bottom) will wrestle against the luchadores in Phoenix this Saturday. Hiban Huerta
Lucha Libre — masked Mexican, high-flying pro wrestling — will be one of the first spectacles the attendees will see and hear when they enter the Cannaval music and cannabis shindig on Saturday, April 30.

They might catch a good whiff, too.

The Phoenix Events & Entertainment Complex, west of downtown Phoenix, is the site where cannabis and carnivals collide — creating Cannaval.

The "twofer" Saturday event, Cannaval Music Festival Experience and Cannaval Expo Lounge, is modeled after los carnavales in South America — with a twist. The 12-hour music festival will have designated cannabis consumption lounges where the concertgoers can still view the musicians performing live.

Authority Zero, The Black Moods, Mouse Powell, Black Bottom Lighters, Pariah Pete, Dann G, Barefoot, and Rico Santana 400 will perform on the main stage. Three DJs will also be on deck on the opposite side of the venue. But that's just the beginning. An additional 18 samba dancers, six rotating aerial acrobats, jugglers, stilt walkers, fire performers, master balloon artists, unicyclists, and glassblowers will appear throughout the 13-acre carnival grounds.

The vendors have the 21-and-up (and 18-and-up with a med card) attendees covered. The Cannaval Expo Lounge is a 3-acre spot dedicated to celebrating Arizona's ever-growing cannabis community. Thirsty or "cotton-mouthed" attendees can swig beverages at one of the five fully stocked bars. And for folks who get the munchies, 25 food trucks and vendors will be there to help satiate the situation.

As this story goes live, Phoenix New Times just got word that six masked luchadores from Tijuana and Mexicali are driving into the west Phoenix venue pumped to grapple with Phoenix- and San Diego-based professional wrestlers. And while it's still unclear if the wrestlers will spark up at the show, they will have a choice: A cannabis consumption lounge is a turnbuckle's leap away from the wrestling ring that's 18 by 18 feet.

The festivities start at noon and continue until midnight. The Phoenix Events and Entertainment Complex is located at 2209 North 99th Avenue, a block north of East McDowell Road by the 101 and Interstate-10 interchange.

General admission is $40, and there's a clear bag policy, no exceptions: no backpacks, no guns, no weapons of any kind, no open containers, no drugs, and no drug paraphernalia.
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