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Another Kind of April 20th

Yesterday's post was about the Columbine tragedy that happened on April 20th 10 years ago. Today's post is about a different kind of April 20th - Santa Cruz 420, to be exact.

I have probably led a sheltered life because until about five years ago, I had never heard of the celebration that happened every 4/20 at 4:20 p.m. on campuses around the country (and the world). And this has been going on since the early 70's!

Here is Wikipedia's history of the event.

University of Colorado at Boulder has huge crowds every year - 10,000 last year, it was reported.

At the top of the Wikipedia page is this photo titled "Santa Cruz 4/20 celebration at Porter Meadow on UCSC campus in 2007".
04-21-09a.jpg

It's funny they should show this particular photo for this particular year because that was the year I decided to attend! Yes, it was my 65th birthday, and I wanted to go to this infamous event at least once.

It was quite incredible, actually. I expected a couple hundred people walking down from the campus buildings into Porter Meadow. But the people kept coming and coming, like little ants from all over. I think it was something like 5,000 people there! All very orderly. Only one police officer spotted, just watching the crowd.

And promptly at 4:20 p.m., they all lit up. A huge cloud of smoke wafted over the meadow. We were kind of on the outskirts of the crowd and out of the smokey area. Being the oldest people there, no one offered to share any of their stash with us. Oh well!

It was truly amazing, and I am so glad to have gone.

Here is a report on yesterday's event in Santa Cruz. Although the school administration tried to put a damper on things, it seems to have gone on as usual. After all, it IS a tradition!


Comments (2)

Wow! I've never heard of this and I'm so impressed that you went (what a birthday memory, LOL).

There was something similar at UNC-CH when I was in school. It was called "High Noon" and every Friday at 12 noon, people would go to the Bell Tower and light up. It went on for years but finally the authorities put a stop to it. But it was never as crowded as 420!

Great post!

Kim:

Should I be nervous that my 16 year-old daughter told me about this event? ;D. I'd never heard of it either. She also heard that 4/20 is/was Bob Marley's birthday and thought that ironic. Ah, but she is wrong b/c as I just checked wikipedia it's February 6 - can't wait to tell her (nanny nanny poo poo).

Sounds like a great way to celebrate your b-day! And Happy belated!!

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