The Cannabis Cup was started in 1988 by then-editor of High Times magazine, Steven Hager, and was held annually in Amsterdam until legal cannabis gained a foothold in the United States. The first U.S. version of the event took place in San Francisco in 2010 and High Times has been producing them here ever since.
Following a 6-0 vote by the San Bernadino City Council on Wednesday night, the organizers of the High Times Cannabis Cup that was scheduled for the 4/20 weekend were denied a temporary event permit. The three-day marijuana festival was set to take place at the NOS Events Center and include performances by Lil Wayne, Raekwon, Yo Gotti, 2 Chainz, and others.
In regards to events held at NOS, organizers have apparently had little difficulty securing permits previously as the venue has hosted many marijuana events on a regular basis over the past few years. But council members say that the new state cannabis regulations require a sixty-day advance notice when applying.
Paperwork for the event was filed through the California Bureau of Cannabis Control, but Cannabis Cup organizers failed to file in a timely fashion with the city; only three days before the event. Normally, this might not be a problem, but new post-Prop 64 regulations have changed the way things work in all facets of the Golden State’s world of marijuana.
In an email to the city, California Bureau of Cannabis Control chief Lori Ajax said that her agency would permit the Cannabis Cup activities if the city of San Bernadino would allow it. But in a late-night Wednesday session, the city council unanimously voted to not license the marijuana element of the High Times festival.
And even though High Times was denied the permit, the event can still take place. There just can’t be any cannabis at the Cannabis Cup, which defeats the main purpose of the festival.
An estimated 20,000 people were expected to attend the three-day event.
The future of marijuana events has been uncertain in light of new state regulations that have gone into effect in 2018. But in this case, even the chief of California’s Bureau of Cannabis Control was willing to let the Cup continue as planned; it’s the San Bernadino city council’s 6-0 vote that put a damper on the weekend’s festivities.
Primary Municipal Elections for the city will be held on June 5, 2018 and candidates for the positions of Mayor, and three council seats are set to be voted on.