Great Barrington’s first 4/20 marijuana festival draws crowd

(Hannah Shirley) Vendors sold an assortment of colorful glass pipes and other smoking devices during the festival.

GREAT BARRINGTON — Saturday may not have been the first time locals have celebrated 4/20, but it was the first time they were able to do so out in the open.

Toasted Jam, the alcohol-free adult-only festival at the Great Barrington Fairgrounds Saturday afternoon, celebrated the decades-old marijuana holiday with unclear origins with live music, food trucks, vendors and entertainment like face painting and crafting, and was well-attended despite windy and muddy conditions.

There’s much value to be found in events like these, said volunteer Lucinda Ralston, who describes herself as an old cannabis pioneer.

“Cannabis is legal and it needs to be out there in the open,” she said. “We need to be able to gather together and spread joy and music and lots of organic lifestyle choices.”

The event was hosted by Green Mind Events, a Charlemont-based cannabis events company founded last October by Nicholas Hall and Emily Jones.
Green Mind events has hosted several of other educational and recreational events, but said they were particularly drawn to Great Barrington for their full festival, and have hopes to return back next year.

Daniel and Max Lowenstein, the brothers behind Great Barrington-based Berkshire Glass and Grow, were among the vendors at the festival selling an assortment of colorful glass pipes and other smoking devices, which they will soon sell out of their own storefront on North Main Street when it opens next month.

Daniel said the energy at the festival was good and attendees seemed to be excited to be there. “It’s definitely impressive to see a turnout despite bad weather,” Max said.

At a nearby table, festival-goers could take a break from the festivities to sit and bead their own cannabis leaf.

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