Seattle Hempfest turns 25 years old this weekend, August 19–21. It’s a “protestival” that brings together activists and cannabis enthusiasts from all over the world for three days of fellowship, goodwill and legal weed. Three hundred thousand people are expected to attend. Here are some tips for making your visit to Seattle Hempfest hella enjoyable:
- Wear comfortable shoes: Myrtle Edwards Park is long and slim like an old-school joint, about 1.2 miles. There will be lots of walking, and nothing kills a good weed buzz like sore feet. Start by entering the park via the north entrance, which is usually way less crowded than the main entrance on the south end.
- Pace yourself: Everyone’s smoking and vaping, doing dabs and consuming edibles. You have three days, so don’t overdo it the first day: Take it easy Friday, kick it into second gear on Saturday, then go hard on Sunday. And stay hydrated.
- Plan ahead: If you’re coming from out of town and haven’t already book your accommodations, do it today! Seattle is woefully underserved when it comes to hotel rooms. Waiting until the last minute to find a place to crash is the worst when you’re full of weed and all you want to do is pass the eff out.
- Leave time to get places: Since there are five stages, that’s where the walking comes in. Say you just saw your favorite local band on the Seeley Stage at the northern edge of the park, and you want to catch a hot panel in the Hemposium tent on totally the other side; that walk could take as long as an hour. So plan out your schedule and make sure you leave plenty of time to get where you want to be.
- Clean up after yourself: You’d be surprised at how many people leave a mess behind. Here’s a good idea: Clean up your junk and pick up a piece or two of trash that isn’t yours. Cigarette smokers need to be especially mindful: The city makes Hempfest organizers pay a fine for every butt and roach found in the park after the festival. Cleanliness is next to stoniness.
- Sunday is the best day for shopping: There will be hundreds of vendors hawking all manner of T-shirts, glass pieces, smoking supplies and whatnot. Vendors are more inclined to haggle on Sunday than they are on Friday. No one wants to pack a bunch of unsold gear back into the van.
Follow these basic guidelines and you should have a terrific Seattle Hempfest. Look for me on the schedule, and just walking around. I’ll be the guy wearing the colorful sport jacket, tie and dreads.
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