Sat. Sept. 2 THC Athletes threw their first ever music festival at the Shoreline Aquatic Park in downtown Long Beach. The morning started with a 5K run by athletes who all medicate with cannabis on a daily basis. As the marijuana movement continues to progress forward, advocates look for ways like these to help remove the stigmas that still plaque weed to this day.
“We’re trying to make the world aware of the cannabis users that are athletic, active and out there,” said Logistics Coordinator Monica Mason. “To dispel some of the myths out there about cannabis users just being lazy people that stay at home and don’t do anything.”
J-Ro, a member of rap group Tha Alkaholiks and regular cannabis patient, was one of the many participants in the early run that started at Shoreline and Aquatic then continued back along the marina. Shortly after the race, completion medal still hanging from his neck, he took the stage with Tash and E-Swift to spit some of their most popular songs like, “Only When I’m Drunk,” “Flute Song” and “Make Room.” The festival was in the middle of a hot day but free to attend, so it was a surprise more people didn’t take advantage of this opportunity to support the music, industry and the movement. Though the turnout was expected to be a little larger, neither the fans nor the different bands, Tha Alkaholiks or Ras Kass gave any less, performing so their music could be heard throughout the harbor and when the crowd screamed, they had no choice but to go harder.
“I brought the old nineties back in play and they rockin’ like I knew they would,” said event host Jay Timms.
OCNorml, Bud and Bloom and Border X Brewing were among the sponsors for this event and there are plans to host several cannabis-related happenings in the future, including a possible 420 event. Trying to get people to understand the plant, it’s uses and the sciences behind cannabinoids is a struggle organizations like THC Athletes is constantly battling. Which is groups go together and strides are always being made in the direction of professionalism and maturity in regards to the cannabis industry. Some people simply can’t let go of the visions of Cheech & Chong, Beavis and Butt-Head, other shows or images that portray the daily weed smoker as useless, lazy, unproductive or whatever other negative perspective possible. How do we get people to see that it’s not just about getting high anymore?