420 - The Story Behind the Haze

The weird origins of 420

It’s true that some of the myths around the origins of 420 are a little hazy. Some say 420 was a code for police to denote marijuana smoking in progress. A wider explanation attributes some magic math from lyrics to Bob Dylan’s famous song that incites, “Everybody must get stoned,” refrain from “Rainy Day Women No. 12 & 35” (12 x 35 = 420). 

 

Whether there’s truth to these urban legends or not, the folklore does fire the imagination, more so than the probable truth: San Rafael teens getting high in suburban California in the early 1970s. Dubbed "The Waldos," they used 420 as a code for their “green meetings” between classes. But it wasn't until a Deadheads concert that the word spread through the crowd gaining worldly recognition. 

And from there, fellow bud-lover aficionados around the world fire up together at 4:20 PM.

420 origins in Canada

The day has always held a political tone too, with crowds gathering to advocate for legalization of the healing plant. What better way to protest than to gather in public and light up in a group act of civil disobedience? With cities like Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto, having annual rallies, Vancouver was arguably the largest in the country.

Rallying for the legalization of cannabis

Weird 420

With legalization, events are getting bigger, better and weirder. No matter the size or strangeness, 420 has come a long way, and has helped forward cannabis legalization. Kiaro is excited to see what the future holds for the celebration.

Stay tuned for our round up of top 420 events.