April 20, or 4/20 in its calendar denotation, is a holiday celebrated by many weed smokers both in the United States and around the globe. It's a day for smokers to celebrate their love of the intoxicating flower. Particularly in the U.S. where marijuana is not federally legal, it also serves as a rallying date for advocates of legalization.
The most popularly believed story involves a gaggle of cannabis-loving California teens, a wall at a local high school campus, and a famous rock band. The cohort which dubbed itself the "Waldos" used to gather at 4:20 pm to take up. The time stamp became code for the act of smoking weed, and eventually spread beyond the Golden State's borders.
The band that helped popularize the term "420" was none other than The Grateful Dead. One of the "Waldos" worked as a roadie for bassist Phil Lesh and spread the word among the Deadheads. In 1990, some fans distributed flyers inviting people to smoke "420" on April 20 at 4:20 p.m. One of them reached High Times magazine, which printed it and made it famous.
Since then, 4/20 has become an international observance for marijuana enthusiasts. People gather to smoke, share stories, and advocate for legalization. Some celebrities and politicians have also joined the celebration, such as Snoop Dogg, Willie Nelson, and Bernie Sanders.
Whether you celebrate or not, you may be interested to learn the smoke-hazed lore behind the holiday. Now you know how a group of teens getting high spawned a global cannabis-lovers event. Happy 4/20!