Marijuana festival to be held in Andersonville on 4/20

CHICAGO (WLS) -- A marijuana street festival will be held in the Andersonville neighborhood on Chicago's North Side this weekend.

The second-annual 4/20 Waldos Forever Fest will be held on Saturday, April 20, from 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. The number 4/20 is used to reference the drug.

Organizers said more than 3,500 people are planning to attend this year, more than double last year. Admission is free.

A block of West Argyle Street near North Clark Street will be shut down for the fest, which will have food, entertainment and educational materials.

Live music acts include Big Freedia, Air Credits, White Mystery, Tatiana Hazel and Akasha. Food trucks from Three Legged Tacos and Chicago Lunchbox will also be there.

"We are seeing new people every day. And with the festival coming up this weekend, our phones have been ringing off the hook. People have been wanting to talk about it all week," said Paul Lee, general manager at Dispensary 33.

For the second year in a row, Waldo's Forever Fest will be outside the front door of Dispensary 33 at the corner of Argyle and Clark. The outdoor festival is all about educating people about pot use in Illinois.

"I've seen so many people completely turn their lives around after coming here. I think it's one of the most important programs Illinois has put forth," Lee said.

The Chicago Cannabis Alliance is one of the sponsors.

"The street festival is all about education. That is our number one goal, it has been from the start. There will be no cannabis consumption on the site and there's going to be signs," said Abigail Watkins.

"The more accepted and less stigmatized it is, the better off we'll be. Because at the end of the day, it's helping people," medical marijuana card holder Jake Bradley said.

"Seniors are using weed more than ever before, partly because they used it as teenagers and maybe they took a hiatus while they were raising a family and hey, now that it's legal, why not?" card holder Diane Alexander White said.

While there are efforts to make cannabis legal for recreational use, Illinois use is only legal with a medical marijuana card.

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