What is 420? The Roots and Revelry of Cannabis Culture

Every year, as April winds blow and spring blossoms unfold, a unique celebration takes place that unites cannabis enthusiasts worldwide. This occasion is none other than 420 (Saturday, April 20), a term that transcends its numerical form to symbolize a global moment of unity, celebration, and advocacy for cannabis culture. At Purple Moose Cannabis, we’re not just participants in this culture; we’re avid celebrators of the spirit and history that make 420 a cornerstone of cannabis tradition. Let’s delve into the origins, significance, and how you can commemorate this day with us.


Unveiling the Mystery: The Origins of 420

The story of 420 is as intriguing as it is misinterpreted, with myths and legends intertwining with historical facts. The most widely accepted origin traces back to 1971 in San Rafael, California, where a group of five high school students, known as “the Waldos,” because their main meeting spot “was a wall outside the school” where at 4:20 PM they would go to search for an abandoned cannabis field with a map made by the grower. Although the elusive crop remained just that, the term 420 blossomed into a code among them for their cannabis escapades.


It is also rumored that one of the original “Waldos” had a brother that was friendly with Phil Lesh, the Grateful Dead bassist and cannabis user. It is said that the Waldos smoked cannabis with the Grateful Dead, who also lived and played in San Rafael since the 1960’s. The Grateful Dead is also noted as a popular band for cannabis consumers and known for spreading the term 420. 


It is also recognized that in 1989, the Cannabis Action Network, related with High Times, created 420 with the date April 20 to organize cannabis rallies and events.  


From these humble beginnings, 420 spiraled into a global phenomenon, symbolizing cannabis culture and its advocacy.  It is also an important time to reflect on the strides made in cannabis legalization, medical advancements, and the breaking down of stigmas associated with its use. After the legalization of cannabis in Canada, the annual date of April 20 (420) as the “Cannabis Holiday” has grown (pardon the pun) and is recognized and celebrated at events and gatherings saluting the cannabis lifestyle, industry, culture, and its wellness benefits. 


At Purple Moose Cannabis, the “420 Weekend” at our dispensaries in Toronto, Oshawa, and North York from April 18 to 20, is a pivotal event that encapsulates our passion for cannabis and its community. It’s an opportunity to educate, celebrate, and share the myriad benefits and joys that cannabis brings into our lives. In honor of this day, we go all out to ensure our customers have access to the best products, demonstrations, exclusive promotions and deals, swag and entertainment in-stores.. Whether you’re a seasoned cannabis aficionado or new to the scene, 420 at Purple Moose Cannabis is about embracing the culture, expanding your cannabis horizons, and enjoying the communal spirit of this special day.  We look forward to celebrating with you!


Laval Dr

Oshawa SmartCentre South
575 Laval Dr Unit #400, Oshawa, ON, L1J 6X2

Oshawa SmartCentre 
575 Laval Drive, Unit #400

Lawrence Ave W

SmartCentre North Park Plaza
1383 Lawrence Ave W

North York, ON M6L 1A4

SmartCentre North Park
1385 Lawrence Ave W

Bathurst St

Cedarcroft Plaza
5984 Bathurst Street
North York, ON M2R 1Z1

Bathurst & Cedarcroft
5984 Bathurst Street

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