For many, cannabis is about taking a break and chilling out. So it’s fitting that the High Times village at Life is Beautiful is a spot where festival goers can duck the sun and/or wind, take a load off after standing through too many sets, play foosball and ring toss, check out some art or just reflect on the day and recharge for what’s next.
“It’s fun. People are really interested,” said Misha Cook or Evergreen Organix. “It’s been non-stop.” She was handing out samples over Evergreen cereal treats and, even non-infused, they drew plenty of takers to the New Amsterdam Naturals dispensary booth. Located on the first two levels of the El Cortez parking garage, the space was transformed into a showcase and lounge, with concrete pillars wrapped in High Times covers from Bob Marley to Damian Marley. At the end, closer to the Downtown stage, an array of white-upholstered couches and green leaf-shaped chairs are a good spot to check one’s phone while listening to ScHoolboy Q’s set.
A series of booths offered information and swag—not weed, but lighters, stickers and bandannas (and, no, you can’t have my Evergreen Organix fidget spinner) from cultivators, producers, dispensaries and other related businesses. I.S.I. Group offered up some variety with an artwork display, while Advanced Nutrients’ plant compounds provided the backdrop for another lounge area.
Waiting in line to have her arm “tie-dyed” at the Black Light Visuals Body Art booth, a young woman wearing a silver fanny pack flipped through a few strain cards from the Matrix NV booth, touting the virtues of Super Lemon Haze (“energetic, uplifting, euphoric”) or Tangilope (“sativa dominant hybrid has an extremely pungent citrus aroma”). She intended to take them back to Texas, noting that her friends “won’t believe this shit.” She herself had made her first trip to a dispensary the day before and was impressed by the array of options, but felt “kinda overwhelmed by all the choices.”
One of the goals of the High Times village is to familiarize people with the many forms and uses of cannabis. At the Rosin booth, people can watch a rosin press in action and learn how the machine turns buds into waxes and oils—then they can step over to the Dr. Dabber table and see the vape pens that it can be used in. Yet it was also a place for those wise in the ways of the weed to meet like-minded folk, such as the fellow who helpfully pointed out that one could also make rosin with a hair-straightener.
Futurola showed their full array of tools from your pot smoker’s grinders and papers (Tommy Chong’s brand, y’all) to the knockboxes that growers/producers use to roll dozens of joints simultaneously. Magical Butter drew those curious about how to make cannabis topicals and edibles, other checked out Moxie’s merch. “Ah, it’s mellow in here,” said a man as he slid down into a chair. “Like High Times should be.”