The Pennsylvania Cannabis Festival, in its 9th year, will take over Pocono Raceway in Long Pond on April 22-23, 2023. The event dubbed "Pocono420" highlights the Keystone State's vibrant cannabis culture. This Scranton born festival is the one of the largest gatherings of its kind on the east coast, second only to the Boston Freedom Rally.
Pocono Mountains with its high elevation, amazing hospitality and natural beauty lines up to be a perfect host for these budding entrepreneurs.The festival has roots in the Northeast region starting in Scranton in 2015 as a rally. In October 2019 the event held its first Fall Marketplace in Berks County drawing great success. Kutztown became the new home of the cannabis festival hosting the bi-annual events and will continue to host the Fall Marketplace event in October while the main event heads to Pocono.
Steeped in over 50 years of sporting tradition, the Pocono Raceway has jumped into the newly formed hemp industry with its brand Pocono Organics CBD. The company grows sustainable foods, produces quality cannabis products, and serves delicious culinary creations out of their store which is located adjacent to the event grounds. The best part about their whole operation is that it is fueled by regenerative and organic methods utilizing solar.
The move to Pocono Raceway is a "peanut butter and jelly situation for both organizations'', festival organizers say. The Pocono attraction comes with the infrastructure the producers need to host the tens of thousands of enthusiasts that show en masse for the vendors and high energy entertainment. "Acres of flat stable parking lots with ample accessible spaces for the disabled have always been on our wish list. The raceway checks all boxes"
The Long Pond venue also will be the first time camping is extended to patrons at the Pennsylvania Cannabis Festival. The two day General Admission experience starts as low as $10 for this 18 and older event. GA passes include daytime access to over 200 vendors, 30 unique food trucks, discussion panels, live music and sponsored areas. Concert passes include GA perks with access to the late night concert stage and cafe under the big tent. Car, RV, or Super RV tickets include two all access passes to GA, concert, and camping areas. There are single camping passes for those who wish to add on guests or just pitch a tent for the weekend. Passes are on sale through Eventbrite.
The music for the Pocono420 is stacked with canna-centric bands from the Keystone State like Space Kamp, Brahctopus and Bong Hits For Jesus. Legendary California based headliners Kottonmouth Kings and Mendo Dope round out the Curaleaf Concert Stage with the New York reggae-rock act Root Shock and night capped by Scranton based edm dj, ISOBE. Cultivated Mind will be coming from legal Virginia straight off his Southern Migration Tour. The PennCannaFest house band, Cheezy and the Crackers hailing from New Jersey, bring their best interactive show of musical talent and pure fun. A Spotify playlist with a song from each act is even available for you to listen to now.
It's a place where industry leaders gather to showcase their medically focused brands. People flock from all corners of the state to learn directly from medical growers, dispensaries, doctors, ancillary businesses like medical device manufacturers and advocacy groups. The education component is key to building and maintaining a vibrant medical cannabis program overseen by the Pennsylvania Department of Health as well as laying a solid foundation for adult use infrastructure.
The hemp industry will be on full display as well. Pocono Organics CBD will be a Gold Sponsor of the 2023 event. Throwing their name in with the largest cannabis operators in the world like Presenting Sponsor Curaleaf. The Pocono Organics brand is likely to become a household name in the state’s cannabis market once regulation allows for sales of THC plant products to adults over 21. Earmarked to be a multi-billion dollar industry, the Pocono Raceway is poised to be a leader in the newly forming industry.
Blazing trails, Pocono Organics CBD became the first cbd business in history to be Title Sponsor of a NASCAR Cup Series race. The Pocono Organics CBD 325 which was hosted at the Raceway in June 2021. There were strings attached to some of the advertising. The word CBD would be left out of television broadcasts. With cannabis product companies like 3Chi sponsoring Tyler Reddick's #8 car, Wiz and Cypress Hill performing for it’s fans, it's clear NASCAR and the world of racing is ready for the plant based economic benefits of well rounded regulation.
One of the event's special guests Randy Lanier is a racing and cannabis legend all in one. Star of Netflix’s “Bad Sport - Need for Weed”, Randy is one of the world's largest smugglers of the plant and arguably one of the best Indy Car racers of the 1980's. As a cannabis prisoner, Randy was granted clemency from his life sentence by President Obama. Randy is now Vice President at Freedom Grow, a non profit organization that supports non violent cannabis prisoners. His legacy has garnished him a commercial license from the state of New Jersey to grow cannabis to supply their newly formed adult use industry. He works tirelessly now to spread the message that no one belongs in jail for a plant which is a sentiment shared by the event organizers Zick Productions. The 1984 IMSA Camel GT title winner and 1986 Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year is poised to greet Pocono guests and sign his book “Survival of the Fastest: Weed, Speed, and the 1980s Drug Scandal that Shocked the Sports World” at the Freedom Grow booth both days.
Pennsylvania Cannabis Festival is something you should try. It's a place for inclusion, diversity and plant loving people showcasing cannabis’ true potential through education and community. Bring your good vibes, best buds and live the high life for a weekend at the Pocono420 in Long Pond. Event information and tickets can be found at www.pocono420.com.
Staff Writer: Jeff Zick