Nimbin celebrates 4.20 with joints

Max Stone (left) and Michael Balderstone in front of the Hemp Embassy and Hemp bar, ahead of the Nimbin MardiGrass at the end of April.
Max Stone (left) and Michael Balderstone in front of the Hemp Embassy and Hemp bar, ahead of the Nimbin MardiGrass at the end of April. Jerad Williams

AT 4.20pm yesterday pot smokers took a small comfort in knowing they were not the only cannabis users taking part in one of life’s small green pleasures.

Thirteen years ago, Max Stone introduced the concept of 4:20 to Nimbin – a time when pot smokers from all over the world simultaneously smoke away and know someone, somewhere in the world is following suit.

The 4:20 concept also represents April 20 – an international, but unofficial, day for cannabis consumption.

Mr Stone and MardiGrass co-organiser Michael Balderstone rolled their joints to celebrate 4:20 yesterday in Nimbin.

“When I first came to Nimbin, I did 4:20 myself and I was looking for a time when I could talk to Americans (online) and smoke pot with them at the same time,” Mr Stone said.

“We educated thousands of Australians about 4:20 being the time to smoke pot.

“It’s a meeting of mind.

"When you will look around at 4:20 at MardiGrass, you’ll see lots of people with smiles.

“It’s how the world should be.”

If everyone stopped and smoked pot, there would be world peace, Mr Stone said.

The Nimbin MardiGrass Festival runs from April 30 until May 1.

MardiGrass goers will be invited to participate in a huge 4:20 event during next week’s festival, outside the Hemp Embassy in Nimbin on Saturday.

The demonstration will be filmed and used as part of a campaign to be submitted to NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell.

The footage will be accompanied by a petition of 10,000 signatures, calling for an urgency motion on cannabis legalisation to be introduced in State Parliament.

Mr Balderstone said the theme at this year’s MardiGrass was “bring back respect”.

“Bring Back Respect is the theme, with special interest on the American visitors coming to taunt us with stories of their legal medical cannabis dispensaries,” he said.

“They even have cannabis vending machines in some areas.”

Richmond Local Area Command crime manager acting Inspector Matt Kehoe said police would be on the ground throughout MardiGrass, targeting anti-social behaviour, drug and alcohol-related crime.

“Anyone found with cannabis or other drugs in their possession in Nimbin or coming into the town can expect to be dealt with under the law or cautioning system,” he said.

Topics:  campaign cannabis festival hemp mardigrass nimbin

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