By Ricardo Baca, The Cannabist Staff
The Cannabis Cup lifted off the ground on April 19, with lines sprawling blocks and blocks and festivalgoers in good spirits.
The giant trade show filled out its new home at the Denver Mart, just north of Denver. While some panels were postponed and others were canceled, the fans that filled the venue’s giant parking lot seemed entertained — regardless of the rain that set in around (you guessed it) 4:20 p.m.
Here are 20 quick videos from the Cup’s first day — including advice for day two on traffic tips, what to look out for and more. A few videos are mine, but cheers to Cannabist marijuana critic Jake Browne who got out there early — and he’s still there (at the time of this writing, 5:30 p.m. Saturday).
1. Traffic: If you don’t like sitting on Interstate 25 for hours, consider getting to the Cup very early — at least a half-hour before doors open.
2. Arriving early: Cannabist critic Jake is no dummy. He was there early on Saturday — and here’s his advice on getting into the Cup quick.
3. The calm before the storm: What does the Cup’s venue look like before it’s been taken over by pot aficionados? Have a look inside.
4. The madness: What does the scene look like outside when you’re driving up? Have a look at that line! “Yikes,” is all we have to say.
5. Your tax dollars at work: The Colorado Department of Transportation plastered safe-partying advice on free bags of Cheetos and Goldfish crackers, which were a popular item at the Cup.
6. First people in the Cup: “I’m seeing some smiles!” See the first people into the event, who waited for hours.
7. Into the light: Watch Jake find his first dab of the day.
8. A local business boon: The many businesses in the industrial area surrounding the Cup are seeing a rise in business this weekend. Mexican restaurant La Casa Del Patron is staying open on Easter on Sunday — something they don’t normally do — because of the booming traffic, said employee Roxana Torres, who noted, “The traffic is insane.”
9. First dab of the day: Grape Stomper shatter for Jake’s first dab of the day? Sounds like a plan.
10. It’s getting busy: Check out one of the biggest booths at the Cup.
11. Big Denver-rooted booths: Check out the O.penVape photo booth/antique VW bus, and have a look at what the Clinic is doing, too. (And hear some Sublime in the background, while you’re at it.)
12. Marijuana tourism in action: Chicago resident Eric Ford flew to Denver specifically for 4/20 — and his plans include the Cup, the Rally and the Dabroots festival. His favorite Denver strain so far: Jack Frost from River Rock.
13. 4:20 is nearing: It was almost that time, but where do you go for 4:20 at the Cup? Listen to Jake.
14. Rain! At 4:20!: And then it started raining — and nobody even announced that it was 4:20?
15. What does 4:22 look like at the Cup: It looks like a ghost town. Thanks a lot, rain.
16. Hygiene? Thanks, Good Chem: At least one dispensary had alcohol swabs to keep the vaporizing clean (ish).
17. Non-medicated food? At the Cup?: Hey, a guy’s gotta eat.
18. Ready to wait in line?: If you’re heading to the Cup on Sunday, be prepared for lines, lines and more lines. Here’s a very small portion of a very long line.
19. Meanwhile downtown at the 4/20 Rally: Here’s our colleague Laura Keeney with an early look at the scene at Civic Center, the site of one of the largest 4/20 rallies in the world. (Obviously this was very early in the day.)
20. Wrapping things up: And some thoughts on my first-ever Cannabis Cup.
Ricardo Baca is the editor of The Cannabist. After 12 years as The Denver Post’s music critic and a couple more as the paper’s entertainment editor, he was…
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