Extravaganja, the annual marijuana-freedom festival, held its’ 21st gathering in Amherst on April 28. This year’s event was for one day and organizers are hoping that things go well enough to return to a two-day event next year. Last year, on the 20th anniversary, the event ran two days which made the police unhappy.
Police chief Scott Livingstone said organizers could consider moving the festival to a bigger venue on campus. “It might be getting to the point where it’s getting so large where maybe (they need to be) looking for a larger venue. The Town Common might not be the ideal spot.” Last year more than more 5,000 people attended the event each day. This year more than 3,200 have said they will attend, according to Cannabis Reform Coalition’s Facebook page. Actual numbers of attendees have not been announced as yet.
The free festival, scheduled from noon to 6 p.m., features bands and speakers including Jack Cole, a retired state police lieutenant and member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition among others. The Cannabis Reform Coalition posted on its Facebook page:
“As a UMass RSO (registered student organization) we cannot tell you to smoke marijuana on the commons. It is unlawful to smoke marijuana in public, but it is not a crime. The penalty for marijuana possession under an ounce is a $100 fine. Distribution is a crime however, and passing a joint could technically be considered distribution so be careful.”
The coalition also posted that it will not tolerate distribution of marijuana, drinking in public, consuming other illegal drugs or violence. “If the police see these they might shut down Extravaganja, so don’t ruin it for everyone,” the post stated.
Learn more at Masslive.com.
[image: Google images Massachusetts state flag]
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