Extra Elevated Our 1st 420 Games Experience
The alarm went off at 5:00am. One snooze, and 15 minutes more of cuddles, before we rolled out of bed. As we finished getting dressed, and brushed our teeth, we gave each other an enthusiastic high five before heading down to the lobby for breakfast. Today was going to be the start of our newly found life’s mission, and we couldn’t have been more excited. It was 5:59am when we walked into the lobby. The breakfast buffet had just opened, and we had first dibs on the whole lot. Of course, we stuck to some pretty basic pre-race foods. We had some oatmeal, bananas, and peanut butter. Heather had black coffee, while I dropped two packets of butter into mine.
After fueling up, we checked out and caught a bus to our next hotel. Once we dropped off our backpacks, we headed out for a warm up half mile walk to the 420 Games. The morning air was brisk and refreshing. As we approached the Santa Monica Pier, the sun was just starting to rise over the city, giving a warm glow to the silhouette of the Pacific coastline.
We arrived early, and although there were very few participants at the registration line, we could see many speckled throughout the parking lot getting prepared as other vehicles kept rolling in. Despite the lack of early risers, the event area was alive with activity as security was ushering a long line of vendor vehicles in and out of the gates. Besides the sounds of the nearby ocean, and the call from a few seagulls, all you could hear were footsteps, and the sound of cardboard boxes being opened, as samples, promo gear, and booth equipment were being hauled out of the backs of vans and trucks. Business owner’s and their teams were working together to organize their booths and get ready for the day’s crowd.
The registration line was filling up quickly, and becoming more and more lively by the minute as people of all types starting showing up. There weren’t just runners. There were skateboarders, bicyclists, rollerbladers, and lot of dogs. We even saw a guy on rollerblades being pulled by his dog! As for age groups, they were all accounted for. There were some folks who looked like they could be someone’s grandparents, to parents pushing their children in strollers, and everything in between. Even just standing in line, we could feel the effects of Social Facilitation starting to go to work on our autonomic nervous system.
Just then, a man wearing an official 420 Games t-shirt came rolling by the line on his skateboard, holding a camera as he filmed the eager crowd ready to race and support responsible marijuana use. The gates opened and the line quickly advanced. We were signing our waivers, and picking up our 420 bibs in no time. We had a chance to walk around, and check out a few of the vendor booths. There were so many it was hard to decide where to start! Every one of them had samples and swag ready to go, but we didn’t want to carry too much before the race so we assured them we’d be back. We soon found ourselves speaking with Betty of Betty Khronic, looking over her delicious selection of raw vegan energy bars. Even though the Peanut Butter and the Almond were tempting, we just couldn't pass up the Cuban Coffee. We ripped open the wrappers and quickly fell in love with these tasty energy bars. A big thank you goes out to Betty for her pre-race samples, because MJFITNUT’s first 420 Games race, was assisted by the healthy fuel that is, Betty Khronic.
We took our places for the 420 Yoga warm up sponsored by FlavRxtracts, and before we knew it, it was picture time at the starting line. Jim McAlpine, creator of The 420 Games, thanked the crowd for coming out to support responsible use and counted down for the start of the race. 4…2…0…GO!!! Everyone tore through the WeedMaps banner and took off onto the path along Santa Monica beach. As we ran, people along the path gave notice to all of our matching 420 runner’s bibs. We saw a lot of smiles, a few thumbs up, and even more peace signs. I was getting closer to the turn around point with Heather not far behind me, when I noticed the leader’s of the pack heading in the opposite direction. We threw out peace signs and shouted out, “420 Games!”, in encouragement for those about to take the winner’s circles. I got to the turn around to see Heather headed my way. With huge grins we exchanged fist bumps as we passed, and finished out the race strong. I had just enough time to catch my breath before Heather was finishing the last few meters of the race, and I was able to record her crossing the finish line. We did it!
The next few hours were a blur of vendor booths as we got the chance to speak with several businesses, and business owner’s who were eager to tell us all about their products and missions. We met so many remarkable people. There were so many vendors, too many to list, so please check out our social media pages on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for photos and information about who we met and what we learned.
We were actually having so much fun speaking with vendors, we missed the announcement for bumping up the Power Plant Fitness Challenge. When we arrived at the originally scheduled time it had just finished, but the Power Plant Fitness and 420 Games crew were awesome enough to throw us t-shirts!! That just gives us more to write about for the next event when we compete in the next Power Plant Fitness Challenge, and we can't wait for our upcoming Power Plant Fitness Calisthenics Bootcamp on 4-22-17 in Denver!
The second half of the day was kicked off by speeches from former NFL players like Kyle Turley and Reggie Williams. Reggie, a philanthropist who played the game for 14 years, took the stage and began by explaining how he has overcome an infection in his right knee in the bone, and has saved it from amputation as well as saving his body from opioid damage by utilizing a topical patch created by Pure Ratios.
“I have spent the last 9 years learning how to save my leg from amputation. And I’ve seen pain that I wouldn’t wish on any person. Had they tried to keep me on opioids it would have destroyed my liver, my kidney, my stomach. There’s no way in the last decade that I would've found that solution.”
Reggie says he’s learned the advantage of a medical cannabis solution, and is now able to stretch, and do the things to relieve the pain in his knee and hip. He credits all of this, and the miracle of saving his leg, to Pure Ratio’s phenomenal cannabis patch.
Closing out the crowd with a powerful and inspirational speech was Tracy Ryan with CannaKids. Tracy is the CEO of both SavingSophie.org and cannakids.org. She stepped onto the stage with her adorable daughter, Sophie. Sophie has an incredible story. She has been a cancer patient for over 3 years since being diagnosed, and has been on a cannabis treatment starting at 9 months old. Tracy enthusiastically explains how cannabis has helped Sophie, and how she is just one of over 500 patients her company CannaKids has successfully treated to this day.
“We have had children and adults with zero chance of survival become totally cancer free within a few short months, we’ve had seizure patients stop seizing after their first dose. We have autistic children who were having such bad rages they were put into psych wards and on handfuls of medication that are now not only rage free, but they’re pharmaceutical free. War vets on ptsd drugs, sometimes 26 a day, are now pharmaceutical free. We’re getting rid of the need for opioids. This medicine is a miracle in itself. We now are focused on doing clinical research partnered with Israel and a local hospital to do 7 different pediatric in human clinical trials. We’re going to get to the root of why this medicine works so well, and how to tailor it to each individual person, not based on the disease that they’re diagnosed with, but what’s actually causing that disease inside their bodies, called personalized medicine. That is the track that we’re on.”
“Thank you all for using your voices in your hearts to spread the word about this medicine. There are dying patients all over the world that depend on us to get the word out, because the politicians are still making medical decisions for us and that has to stop. And the only way that can stop is if we rise up and we say no, enough, we want to be well!”
We absolutely loved Tracy’s inspirational and passionate speech! Her company, CannaKids, is a California Cooperative who supplies mold, pesticide and solvent free Honey Gold cannabis oil to children and adults who are suffering from cancer, autism, epilepsy, PTSD, Crohn’s disease, severe pain disorders, and so much more. To find out more and how you can show support, please visit SavingSophie.org and cannakids.org. Also, be sure to check out the documentary “Weed the People”, where Sophie is the star coming out later this year!
After the speeches it was back to the blur of vendor booths. At this point, our bags were getting heavy from all the free giveaways and we still had a bunch more to visit! While going from booth to booth, we enjoyed music and thrilling performances by X Games skaters and BMX bikers who were performing live at the center of the event space. We got to see some pretty daring tricks and thought this was an excellent addition to round out the day.
We walked back to the hotel to get ready for the official 420 Games after party, and to take a look at the loot of samples we had just scored. We dumped everything out onto the bed, and suddenly, we were both kids at Halloween, sorting out our pile of goodies from our bags with gasps of excitement as we discovered more and more cool promo gear and products. More info to come about all the edibles we were able to sample in our Santa Monica article coming out next week!
We cleaned up and took some time to ourselves before enjoying a leisurely walk through Santa Monica's Third Street Promenade on our way to the 420 Games after party. We arrived around 5:30pm and as we were walking up to the R.O.C we could hear the music and noticed there was a crowd gathered out on the rooftop. We looked at each other and smiled yet again. We couldn’t believe we were going to our first rooftop party in LA!
Security checked our tickets and IDs and we made our way up the elevator to the top floor. Inside the elevator the music was muffled, but getting louder as we approached our stop. As the doors opened, the music began to fill the space and we were welcomed by the familiar smell of marijuana smoke. People were everywhere, hanging out, getting more free samples, and burning the ganj'.
Quality Concentrates was offering complimentary dabs out on the roof deck, and even though we were already smoking a joint, I decided to take my first go at a dab.
It was intense. I took in half the dab on my first hit, and the other half with the second. I took it like a pro and didn’t cough, but then about ten seconds later, my eyes started to water and I began to cough, and cough hard. I made my way to the bathroom while trying not to lose my lungs, and dried my watery eyes. By that time, I actually had tears running down my face. This was my first dab experience and I loved the effect. We’re fairly new to concentrates and plan to learn more throughout the year. In retrospect, I would have loved more info on the strain of the concentrate. Thank you to Quality Concentrates for giving me, and MJFITNUT, our first dab experience!
After returning to the roof deck, Heather passed me the joint and I put my arm around her as we stared into the city. As the sun was setting behind the tall buildings of Los Angeles, the DJ starting prepping the stage for the band. The night’s live performance was a space funk infused hip-hop band, The Milky Way, and they were incredible! Check them out on Facebook @themilkywayans, and you can find their album here http://keepitmilky.com/.
We called it an early night, and walked back to the hotel. Upon entering our room, we kicked off our shoes and collapsed on the bed. We were exhausted, both physically and mentally, but both of us had the time of our lives, and couldn’t have been happier. We learned a lot of things on our first 420 Games adventure. One of the things we learned is, the race is more of a fun run, and it isn’t timed. We didn’t realize this, and will be timing ourselves going forward to track and share our progress. We also learned that some vendors run out of samples, so that’s just more motivation to finish the race early and get them while they last!
Starting with our 2 round trip first class flights and 2 nights hotel stays for only $22.40, the entire trip and 420 Games experience was absolutely amazing! We knew we were going to have fun. We knew we were going to meet a lot of great, like minded people who are just as passionate about all of this as we are. We also knew it would feel good to know we’re doing everything we can to set a positive example for marijuana consumers, in order to demonstrate to people like Jeff Sessions, that marijuana doesn’t make you lazy, unsuccessful, or a bad person. What we didn’t quite know, is just how fulfilling all of this would really feel. Being able to get out and create a platform to promote events like The 420 Games, and represent marijuana in a positive light, is the greatest thing we’ve ever started, and this is only the beginning.
We want to personally thank Jim McAlpine, and all the hands involved in helping put on The 420 Games LA as well as all the upcoming 420 Games. It’s because of all your efforts to begin this event series, as well as Power Plant Fitness, and CannaAthlete, that inspired us to really get out and help people, while challenging ourselves along the way. We couldn’t be doing all of this without you, and what you’ve created. We can’t wait for the next 420 Games event in Seattle on May 28th, and look forward to meeting all the great people in Washington!
We also want to to express our sincerest gratitude for the support of our official sponsors:
Colorado NORML, Black Rock Originals, Bluebird Botanicals, Kush Bottles, thehila, Realm of Caring, and Project22-org. We greatly appreciate your support. It's going to good use in helping to create a positive image for cannabis and it's consumers. Thank you so much for everything!