While it’s not yet on calendars, April 20 has become the unofficial holiday of marijuana, particularly in the growing number of states where pot has been decriminalized for recreational use. “It has become hugely celebrated,” says Brett Konen, an editor with Seattle-based Leafly.com, which calls itself the world’s largest cannabis information source. The Trump administration has indicated it may crack down on marijuana, but the industry continues to grow for now. Konen shares cannabis culture hotspots with Larry Bleiberg for USA TODAY.
Statue of Louis Pasteur
San Rafael, Calif.
The story of 420 can be traced to a statue on the San Rafael High School campus in the San Francisco Bay area. In 1971, a group of students planned to meet there at 4:20 p.m., and search for a marijuana patch believed to be growing in the area. 420 became their code word for pot, and the rest is history, Konen says. “It has become a concept and a phenomenon and a holiday.” visitmarin.org
Trump Park Avenue
While there’s no historic marker, this Upper East Side building, now owned by Donald Trump, is where pop music changed forever. On Aug. 28, 1964, Bob Dylan visited the Beatles in what was then the Delmonico Hotel, and introduced them to marijuana. “They were hanging out and waiting for wine to be delivered, and Bob Dylan suggested they light up,” Konen says. The building, at 502 Park Ave., now holds condominiums. gonyc.com
Drug Enforcement Administration Museum & Visitors Center
Marijuana is still illegal under federal law, as the DEA museum had made clear in exhibits like “Cannabis, Coca, & Poppy: Nature’s Addictive Plants.” The plant, the museum notes, is the only major illegal drug grown within the country. “It’s a fascinating part of the history, and it’s important to see both sides,” Konen says. deamuseum.org
The famed street corner was the epicenter for the Summer of Love, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. Even now visitors will find trippy murals, head shops and hemp-clothing vendors. “It’s ground zero for the hippie culture,” Konen says. sanfrancisco.travel
Top Notch Hamburgers
If you get the munchies in Austin, there’s no better place to visit than this old-fashioned burger joint. The ’70s throwback was featured in the film, Dazed and Confused, which Konen calls “a cult classic of the cannabis comedy genre.” topnotchaustin.com
With Colorado fully embracing cannabis, perhaps it’s no surprise that Interstate 70’s 420 mile marker near the Kansas border kept disappearing….