Since 1991, Seattle Hempfest has been a celebratory refuge for marijuana activists and aficionados from all over the world. But this year is something special. Thanks to Washington State's legalization of Hempfest's cherished weed and the recently opened public pot stores, this year Hempfest moves beyond the patchouli-stained ghetto of honky Rastafarians flouting the law to become a perfectly mainstream civic event—a fun, skunky spin on Oktoberfest you can take a baby to. (Although you have to be 21 to legally smoke pot anywhere in Washington State.)

Despite the mainstreaming, Hempfest remains explicitly political. Billing itself as "The World's Largest Annual Cannabis Law Reform Event" and spanning three waterfront parks (Centennial, Myrtle Edwards, Olympic Sculpture) to prove it, Hempfest holds that "we do not have legalization until we end the Federal Scheduling of Cannabis. Seattle Hempfest stands as a platform to educate the public on the myriad of potential benefits offered by the Cannabis plant... In particular, Seattle Hempfest seeks to advance the cause of Cannabis policy reform through education while advancing the public image of the Cannabis advocate or enthusiast through example."

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In hopes of helping all Hempfesters set a good stoner example, here are some helpful hints.

DO: Get in the spirit of things, even if it’s too hot to wear a shirt. (And remember to put sunscreen under any and all body paint, as that shit ain’t got no SPF.)

ALICE WHEELER

DON’T: Wear articulated toe shoes to Hempfest. Many attendees will be very high, and those fucking monkey glove shoes are freaky even to the stone-cold sober.

ALICE WHEELER




DO: Wear protective sunglasses. Sometimes at Hempfest, bundles of joints are tossed into the crowd, and you don’t want one of them to put out your eyeball.

ALICE WHEELER




DON’T: Photobomb an otherwise gorgeous shot with your fucking baby stroller.

ALICE WHEELER




DO: Admire the human art. (From the Rasta belt, Led Zep forearm, and dog-collar necklace to the heart full of peace and eternally questioning torso, this man is a masterwork.)

ALICE WHEELER




DON’T: Beg for drugs. That’s what sex is for.

ALICE WHEELER




DO: Respect your elders, such as Keith Stroup, the attorney who founded NORML in 1970, pictured here at last year’s Seattle Hempfest.

ALICE WHEELER

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DON’T: Be too conspicuous. Despite the new legality, it’s still not cool to smoke out in public. (Though cops tend to turn a blind eye at Hempfest, so keep an eye out for this Bieber-looking motherfucker with the free weed.)

ALICE WHEELER

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