It was a long and winding road to Santa Rosa and it was worth every rain-filled moment along the PCH Highway. The 12th Annual Emerald Cup celebrated the cannabis culture with music, art, speakers, competitions and food vendors with or without added greens. Co-founder Tim Blake and colleagues started this venture back in 2003 as a destination to celebrate and recognize the best of the best. Throughout the years, the team expanded and ventured south from Humboldt County to Santa Rosa and made their home at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds. The cannabis festival included a section for Prop 215 compliant guests where they could indulge in the variety of edibles, oils, concentrates, lip balms, vaporizer pens and even suppositories. The two-day event celebrated reggae, hip-hop, rock and DJs and featured such artist as Collie Buddz, Rebelution, Beats Antique, Protoje and Papadosio.
The local meteorologist called for rain but we settled for scattered showers as the fairgrounds were alive with fans of all things music and cannabis. The first day showcased speakers, authors, advocates and growers. Growing workshops and keynote speakers were spread out across the fairgrounds and had the crowd exploring the educational and positive aspects of the plant.
The Expanders opened the festival with John Brown’s Body, Fortunate Youth, Protoje, Collie Buddz and Rebelution, jamming throughout the night. The second day included lifetime achievement awards and presented winners with trophies and rowdy cheers from the heavily sedated crowd. The artist on the main stage included Marv Ellis & We Tribe, Papadosio, Nahko & Medicine For The People and Beats Antique.
The incredible success of the Emerald Cup has been a triumph for the cannabis cause and for the fans that come out every year to worship the music that gets them grooving. With 2016 on the horizon, the Emerald Cup is a festival to look out for in just 12 more months. Lighters are optional.