The lovely flower we call cannabis has held a place of prominence in human civilization for thousands of years. Its fiber, among the toughest in the natural world, goes into everything from clothing to cars. The leaves and flowers have been used in healing and medicine by unrelated cultures all over the earth as means to procure oneness in mind, body, and spirit. In more recent times, popularity with the botanical has begun to pick up the pace in the race to get it legalized in the entire U.S., which will bring a big gust of change to the world of modern medicine.

The artificial negative stigma tied to cannabis is shedding its shell. Folks from all backgrounds, ages, and beliefs are coming together to agree that that there are ancient secrets to health locked away in those magical buds. It’s no exaggeration to say that a grand awakening is happening in this century that is leading masses of people in the direction of natural alternatives to the pharmaceutical drugs being pumped into the market.

Who said medicine couldn’t be pretty?

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When so much excitement, change, and progress are tied to something with the positive potential of cannabis, it’s only natural that people want to get together and share their experiences and passion with one another. Festivals and conventions are one of the most successful ways to attract people with like-minded interests to any one location and get them to home in on what’s cool and happening in that industry.

For example, there’s Comic-Con and E3 for niche audiences who enjoy comic books, movies, and video games. There are huge car expos like SEMA that draw in automotive enthusiasts of all kinds, and give them a spectacle worth waiting for each year. And for the cannoisseurs among us? For almost three decades, High Times has sponsored the Cannabis Cup to bring together the community that thrives behind the plant in all aspects of the scene.

Whoa

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Originating in Amsterdam in 1988 with the help of a man named Steve Hager, Cannabis Cup meant herbophiles finally had a home where they could unite and celebrate the new and exciting things happening within the green realm. The festival brought in hundreds of people centered on cannabis-related innovations and small-business development. There was even a panel of VIP judges who critiqued the various vendors and contestants in a variety of competitions that ranged from best new product to the best indica, sativa, and balanced hybrid strains. Nearly 30 years later, the High Times Cannabis Cup is still kicking and has taken the world by storm.

From its beginnings in Amsterdam, the Cannabis Cup has touched down and sunk roots in many of the states and in Jamaica. They enjoy celebrating with people in areas of the world that have ushered the right to medical and recreational cannabis to the forefront, and now they offer multiple expos yearly. This is all made possible by the thriving culture of people who support one another through a shared passion for cannabis over hard drugs and alcohol. Although the competition to win a Cannabis Cup for a cannabusiness, dispensary, or farm is highly competitive, in the end it’s clearly all about love.

Glass is in seshin’

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High Times does a really great job of keeping up with the “times” and understanding that this industry is living and breathing just as much as the people sculpting its future. At these mega-festivals packed out with thousands of fans, the Times pulls in big faces in pop culture and music to entertain the crowds. Rappers like B.O.B., Curren$y, Wiz Khalifa, and Lil’ Wayne have all been active members of the cannabis community in some capacity and have performed for Cannabis Cup attendees as special guest entertainers.

The excitement of going to your first Cannabis Cup is beyond intense. There’s always a flowing sea of greenophiles buzzing with so many cool things to see and enjoy. You can smell the festival a mile away, with the some of the finest greenery anywhere being taste tested! This gathering is one that you have to cross off your bucket list as soon as humanly possible.

You don’t want to miss out!

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In 2016, the festival has already visited California and Colorado, with plans to hit Clio, Michigan at the end of August. Their website has a lot more information and awesome photos from the events. And for sativa salivation at its finest, get ready to drool over all the luscious photos of glistening, winning buds from years past, and check out the hard work people put into preparing to compete.

Who knows? You may even catch your friends from MagicalButter.com at one of the up and coming shows! We were at the High Times Cannabis Cup in Denver last year and had a lot of fun meeting people and sharing the good news about healthy living with the MB Machine. Check out the video below to see how it all went down!

MB at The High Times Cannabis Cup in Denver 2015

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Garyn Angel is an inventor, award-winning financial consultant, and CEO of MagicalButter.com. His company makes the botanical extractor he invented for infusing cannabis into foods and lotions. Angel is committed to cannabis law reform and was named to the CNBC NEXT List of visionary global business leaders for his work on legal marijuana. He is also founder of the Cheers to Goodness Foundation, a charity that helps “medical refugees”—mainly veterans and children—who need cannabis therapy when traditional treatment options have failed.