“Freedom”–or some other delightfully pungent aroma—was in the air last weekend at the 25th Annual Boston Freedom Rally, known commonly as Hempfest. Cannabis connoisseurs and curious Bostonians alike hit up the Boston Common (no pun intended) to not only relax and enjoy life, but to also show their support for marijuana policy reform—an issue that has found its way to the 2016 ballot.
The interesting thing about this festival, though, was that it was the perfect combination of the expected and the unexpected. The Freedom Rally was comprised of dread locks, fried food galore, and ankles upon ankles of those cute little socks with the marijuana leaves—everything you’d imagine of a festival with the slogans #yesweCANN and #FreedomIsInTheAir. But at the same time, it also hosted panels of politicians and doctors, groups of old hippie couples, and tents upon tents of fancy-ass grilled chicken and chocolate-covered strawberries—everything you’d ever imagine it not to be. Here’s a bit of what I mean:
The unexpected: Stoner rap Just picture four balding white men with matching black shorts and red shirts trying to throw out some hardcore raps. Not a pretty sight. Not a pretty sound.
The unexpected: Doctors smoking joints mid-conversation The highlight of this weekend’s festival was most definitely the brilliant doctor who, mid-sentence in a discussion about medical marijuana, paused to take a hit before returning to the conversation.
The unexpected: Old people who were reliving some Woodstock memories There must have been a dozen adorable older couples holding hands and sporting “Peace, love, free the weed!” buttons.
The unexpected: Fried Oreos, Italian sausage, and chocolate-covered strawberries Bonus points for creativity.
The unexpected: HempFest children? I’m guessing they were there for the fried Oreos.
The unexpected: Imaginative weed attire Even the dread-heads and hipsters got a little creative. Hemp fashion show? Check. Citgo sign shirt that reads “KUSH”? Check. Sunglasses in the shape of marijuana leaves? Check. Way to get innovative, Boston.