SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – The annual 4/20 celebration in Golden Gate Park is returning Wednesday after a two-year hiatus, but San Francisco officials said there would be differences compared to pre-pandemic gatherings on Hippie Hill.
The city announced Monday that regulated and tested cannabis would be sold for the first time at the event. As a result, no one under 21 would be allowed at the celebration.
City officials said the celebration area at Hippie Hill would be surrounded by fences and event staff would check identification and bags.
"This year marks an important moment in the history of 420 at Hippie Hill, "said Nikesh Patel, who directs the city's Office of Cannabis. "For the first time, regulated cannabis will be available for sale and consumption at this year's event. This novel opportunity showcases the strength of San Francisco's vibrant cannabis community and brings new requirements to help create a safe, clean, and enjoyable experience for everyone who attends."
Dr. Grant Colfax, the city's director of health, offered advice to revelers. "Know where the substances you're consuming come from and only trust reputable vendors. Support yourself and those around you by being on the lookout for signs of breathing difficulty or unresponsiveness," he said.
Mayor London Breed said Monday, "I look forward to another successful 420 in Golden Gate Park, but we need everyone to remember to pick up after themselves, stay respectful, keep things peaceful, and of course, have a good time."
Officials said 40 park rangers and private security will manage safety of the event. The fire department will be fully staffed, EMS services would be provided and police will have an increased presence outside the venue.
The celebration of all things cannabis has drawn large crowds to Golden Gate Park for years, long before the state legalized recreational use.
An estimated 14,000 people attended the most recent 4/20 celebration at Hippie Hill in 2019. Officials anticipate up to 20,000 for this year's event.
The celebration, which will include live DJs, comedy and food sales, is scheduled from noon to 5 p.m. Gates open at 10 a.m.
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