ngFor the time being, the council overseeing the Del Mar Fairgrounds has made a decision, along with the input of community members, to cancel the first-ever cannabis festival that was to be held there on September 23rd. Citizens and groups gathered together at a public meeting on Tuesday night and stayed for several hours deliberating the future of the festival.
The decision, ultimately, was to cancel the event.
However, this decision is not yet definite. Board members clarified to organizers of the festival that they would be open to reconsidering the event if a new policy were added to ban marijuana smoking at the fairgrounds.
According to the organizers when the festival was originally approved months ago, only medical marijuana card holders would be able to smoke at the event, and only in designated areas. The opposition came when over 6,000 people confirmed at least some level of interest in attending the event and anti-pot activists had to express their concern.
Critics of the festival claim that it is simply a place to go and use drugs, and there were concerns raised about the legality of the festival in the first place. Since federal law still regards cannabis as an illegal Schedule 1 substance, the legal areas on festivals such as these are quite murky-and therefore risky for anybody who ties their name to the event.
The festival is also called the Goodlife Festival, and was organized by the same folks behind the Del Mar Home and Garden Show. They insist that the event was not about using pot. It was about education and information. Lawrence Bame, one of the festival’s organizers, has also been clear on the fact that the Goodlife Festival will not have any hand in selling cannabis or cannabis products.
As council board members have said that they might again consider the festival if marijuana smoking was banned from the fairgrounds, there is some hope that the cancellation of the event could be repealed. But that will depend on whether organizers are willing to make that change.
Photo by Martika G