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Calgary 420 Cannabis Community
The weather for the 3rd Annual Treating Yourself Expo in Toronto, Ontario was once again hot with high humidity. Debbie and I arrived Thursday so we could tour the expo floor as exhibitors were setting up their display booths. Gives us a chance to talk with old friends about all the new and improved products and services being made available to our community this year. The 3rd TY expo was, as I expected it be, more fun and informative then both previous years events.
I can’t pin down just one display booth that I liked best but there were many I really liked. One favourite of mine was the Steep Hill Lab Inc. Cannabis Analysis Laboratory service that was provided through out the 3 day Expo. I had to take advantage and get some hydroponically grown Serious Seeds AK47 and DNA Genetics OG Kush samples tested. Once the bag was opened the dank odour of DNA’s OG Kush produced a comment instantly “wow what the hell is that you have there” from one of the people standing in front of the testing booth. Dean from DNA happened to be close by as well and he knew right away it was DNA OG Kush. After many interesting positive comments from the crowd around the test booth, Dean, Debbie and I headed back to the DNA display booth to discuss this in further detail. Thanks to DNA for the freebie and we will make sure we share a sample of the end results next year too.
Every year at the Treating Yourself Expo we have seen so many friendly, happy people with smiling faces the only way a person couldn’t have a really great time is to not attend at all. Every year Debbie and I so look forward to meeting more like minded individuals along with spending good quality time with so many old friends that alone is priceless in it’s self. If you have ever attended a pro cannabis type event like this you will know real well what I mean.
The awesome glass blowers competition was new this year. Next year will bring world class glass artists from around the world no less. We are really looking forward to seeing this world class competition happen live next year. Even if you can't make it to Toronto in 2013 for the 4th Annual Treating Yourself Expo you can still watch it live via Pot TV.
The biggest highlight of the whole time in Toronto for us was when we got to have a drink and a meal with John Conroy (President of Norml Canada) at the Friday night VIP party. The heat and humidity did force Debbie and I to leave the Friday VIP party venue earlier then we would have like though.
Saturday night we were invited to Skunk Magazine’s private Breeder’s Bash (world class cannabis seed breeders gather for some private fun times) at Puff Mama’s Bakery venue. Among the entertainers provided was Precious Chong, Tommy and Shelby Chong’s daughter. A funny woman and as nice as her mom and dad too. This was our first time seeing her live on stage.
It was impossible not to get very well medicated at the venue with girls constantly offering up wine glasses filled with perfectly rolled filtered joints to all attending. The venue was of course hot boxed as you can see in the pictures.
Pictures by Kelly Christie, more of his pictures are on facebook.
What is even better still is Marco Renda is looking into a second TY Expo show in Vancouver next year (Oct. or Nov.) as well as the already scheduled 4th annual Treating Yourself Expo in Toronto last weekend of May 2013.
PROGRESS, NOT PRISONS
Panels, Workshops, More
This year was much different then last year for Debbie and I and the expo as a whole. There was a huge improvement in the floor plan laid out for the TY expo. Instead of being spread out over multiple floors everything was on one floor including the huge vapour lounge. More exhibitors, entertainment, attendees, information and free stuff. Even a much more upbeat positive vide surrounded this years 3 day event over last year. The VIP dinner was at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre itself unlike last year when two boats were used. Additionally there were off site after parties at Vapour Central and even Skunk Magazine sponsored a awesome off site party that Kelly Christie and I ended up being coerced onto the stage to be included in part of the show for attendees enjoyment and my embarrassment and enjoyment (yes I have fun with it). Kelly’s performance on stage was just awesome the crowd loved it.
One glaring example, for myself personally, of the change in attitude amount the attendees was last year a attendee approached me with some disturbing comments one being along the line, the expo was going to be raided by the police and so on. I of course knew right away this was not at all true! I went on to try to gently explain to this person that their fears were not at all based on reality and why I knew what I was telling them to be actual facts. Sadly I think I was not able to convince this person and they continued on their way. I assume continuing to spread what they still believed to be true the expo was going to be raided. This year for the 2nd annual Treating Yourself Expo the exact same fearful person from last year was a volunteer in a booth no less.
The Canna MedFair in Vancouver B.C. was the event to get Debbie and I back out in the thick of the community even though I was still recovering from the latest surgery (3 in less then 6 months as of this writing) still attached to a Negative Pressure Wound therapy device. We both needed a big change of pace in our lives at this point and the Canna MedFair was the just the thing we needed spending time with good friends having good times.
Calgary International Airport the security alarm went off as I passed through. Could of been the silver foam that was in a large wound in my left hip area that set off the alarm so I showed the security person a note from my doctor and the medical device in my carry on bag. Still they needed to check me out and make sure I was not a security threat to aviation.
When Debbie and I arrived at the Vancouver Heritage Hall there was no way to miss it with the huge Canna MedFair banner high up on the front of the building over the front entrance. We saw Kelly Kriston (KDK Distributors) and J out front on the sidewalk talking to one of the groups of happy people. As we got a little closer there was more then one sweet smell of cannabis in the air. A out stretched hand appeared and offered up and well rolled cannabis joint complete with filter with many happy greeting directed towards Debbie and I. There it was the tone of this weekend event was set before it had even officially open the doors. All weekend it was such a warm inviting atmosphere no surprise here though I have yet to attend one of these types of events that has not had a warm inviting atmosphere. Seeing old friends and meeting people in person for the first time that we have know on-line and those that we admired and respected but had never met until an such an event as this one is always one of the highlights for me. Also be able to sample many different products produced by many different people in different ways is always a real good time.
The Tall Bothers entertained the crowd with music and comedy. International Hempology 101 Society organized a trivia game and had knowledgeable pro cannabis activists as the contestants. The awesome spread of Greek food was a delight as well.
These types of events are also a good place to learn of new ideas, products including what is and what is not working in social justice advocacy efforts and this is not only limited to the medicinal cannabis community either. The networking is very important for our communities of course. All so many benefits come from these types of events we all need to put forth a strong effort to attend and support events in our local communities and others across our great country.
Also coming soon articles about our experiences in the Calgary 420 booth over 3 days in April at The Body Soul & Spirit Expo and the 7th annual Worldwide Marijuana March May 7 / 2011 and the TY Medical Marijuana and Hemp Expo in Toronto June 3 - 5 / 2011.
Hope to see many of you at the 1st Annual Praire Medicinal Cannabis Cup Saskatoon Sask.
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