The Weed Blog had a blast at the 2012 Cypress Hill SmokeOut last weekend at the NOS Center in San Bernadino, California. I won’t lie, I think I’m still a little stale from the massive amount of marijuana Ninjasmoker and I smoked before, during, and on the way home from the event. I lost track of how many extra strength marijuana brownies we ate lol.
The trip started with the standard 13 hour drive from Eugene, Oregon to the Cypress Hill SmokeOut in San Bernadino, California. People always act shocked when they find out that Ninjasmoker and I drive to our events instead of fly. The explanation is simple – how else are we going to get dozens of brownies and who knows how many grams of Oregon’s finest to the event? Because we don’t travel without it! As medical marijuana patients, we can fly with medical marijuana. However, it’s only to states that recognize out of state medical marijuana patients. Sadly, California does not, despite my repeated attempts to get someone in California to pick up the cause.
The sun up to sun down drive was a piece of cake (this is the third time Ninjasmoker and I have made the trip in the last six weeks…). Once we arrived at our hotel, we proceeded to make it smell like The Weed Blog lol. It was very hard to sleep the night before the Cypress Hill SmokeOut. Like I said in my ‘Happy Cypress Hill SmokeOut 2012 Eve’ article, I was like a kid waiting for Christmas. Eventually the brownies kicked in, and I passed out.
The weather when I woke up for the Cypress Hill SmokeOut was fantastic! Readers in Oregon will testify, we don’t get very much sun in Oregon, so an 80 degree day was a nice change of pace. After a short trip down the road, we finally arrived at the NOS Center. I like the NOS Center as a venue, ever since we went to the Spring Gathering there last June. The venue offers a great blend of indoor and outdoor activities, while also providing great areas to sit in the shade.
When we entered the event, I noticed there were a few things that were different from the Spring Gathering event we went to previously. The most obvious was that there was a stage outside. At the Spring Gathering, there was only one indoor stage. At the Cypress Hill SmokeOut, there were three official stages (two inside, one outside), with a mini stage set up for a Southern California radio station. Coming from Oregon, we don’t have many outdoor concerts, at least not as big as this one, so I was very excited for when the music eventually started. I was told that there were originally plans for five stages, which I’m not sure if that would be overload or not. As it was, there were many acts that I didn’t see because I was at a concert buffet!
Another change was there was no indoor medical marijuana expo, at least I couldn’t find one. At the Spring Gathering, there were countless booths selling medical marijuana products inside one of the buildings, on top of the booths that were set up outside. At the Cypress Hill SmokeOut, there were just the outdoor booths. The booths were still fantastic, don’t get me wrong (Bud Vac was in the house, as well as some great glass vendors), but it is always my favorite part to go talk to marijuana activists at events. I couldn’t find the medical marijuana panels to save my life, and even the info booth didn’t know where they were, or what time they would be held. I actually never found them, but that may be due to the fact that I spent so much time in the medical marijuana consumption area!
The medical marijuana consumption area is where Ninjasmoker and I ended up fairly quickly after entering the event. When I get to an event, I always like to do a sweep through the event to get a grasp on where everything is at. However, immediately after the initial sweep, I like to find out where I can consume marijuana, as it’s probably the most important thing :) The Cypress Hill SmokeOut medical marijuana consumption area was sponsored by WeedMaps, and I have to say, they did a great job of creating an area that was very relaxing. The trees provided excellent shade, there were chairs and tables set up all over, and there was an enormous blow-up Buddha with a marijuana leaf on it’s belly. There area was filled with great people, smoking great meds, and it might have been my favorite part of the event.
After getting thoroughly baked, and watching security tackle a guy that tried to sneak into the event, Ninjasmoker and I were ready to get back out into the main part of the event and listen to some music. The radio station stage (KROO?) was very popular. Dubstep was everywhere at this event, but it was almost never ending at the radio station mini stage. As a result, a big circle broke out in front of the stage where kids were breaking and showing off their moves. I have tried to break dance since the 80’s (I’m thirty years old), but I am just not talented enough so I didn’t get out there. Although, I was very impressed by the people that did have the courage to get out there. Like I said, dubstep was everywhere at this event, even on the main stage at times. The Low End Theory stage was dedicated to dubstep the whole day I was told, although I didn’t make it over there once the music started.
I read a media report that said the Cypress Hill SmokeOut failed to ‘wow’ event goers. I would have to respectfully disagree. Yes, there were no ‘screens adorning the main stage’ but it was still easy to see, even from the back. I’m five foot four inches tall, and even I could see from the back. As with most concerts using the outdoor format, there was no seating and people just huddled as close to the stage as possible. It was fairly easy to move closer to the stage to improve the view, but it really wasn’t even necessary. Sure, screens and/or front row would have been nice, but it was far from a breaking point for event goers. If others that went to the 2012 Cypress Hill SmokeOut disagree, feel free to post comments about your experience.
There were so many fantastic music acts at this event. Cypress Hill was fantastic as always, and had a very ‘activist’ tone at times, which I was very happy to hear. Sublime with Rome was very good, although there is only one original member left in the group. It is always bitter sweet to me to hear Sublime with Rome, as I obviously still like them but long for the days of old. This was the first time that I had heard Dirty Heads in concert, and I must say, they are very good. But by far my favorite performance was by Wiz Khalifa. I liked his songs before his performance, but after hearing him live, I have a new found appreciation for his music. Probably my favorite part of the entire 2012 Cypress Hill SmokeOut was when Wiz Khalifa broke out a cover version of Bob Marley. The entire crowd when nuts, sang along, and either there was a big fire somewhere in the crowd, or more marijuana smoke was being released into the air than ever before…one or the other lol.
I only had two things from the 2012 Cypress Hill SmokeOut that I would have changed. First, I really wanted to go to the panel discussions. If someone that attended the event could let me know, did they actually occur? And if so, when and where? I was told by a booth operator that the panels were only going to be on BReal.tv, but they weren’t sure. If someone could dig up the video and post it in the comments or e-mail it to me, that would be AMAZING!
The other thing that I wanted to do but didn’t get a chance to was stop by the Hail Mary Jane booth. Ninjasmoker and I looked all day for the booth, but never found it. I have wanted to meet their legendary staff for a long, long time now…I guess it will just have to wait for the next event! To Lenny and the HMJ staff, sorry for missing you, hopefully our paths will cross soon! For those of you that didn’t make it to the 2012 Cypress Hill SmokeOut, below is some information about the event so you can kick yourselves for not coming, and hopefully it serves as motivation for getting to next year’s event!