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(Participants begin the 4.2 mile run, August 15. Photo: Olga Rodriguez—AP)

The First ‘420 Games’ and its Goal to Change Marijuana’s Perception

Athletes and casual-tokers alike got up early on Saturday morning for the first event of the 420 Games, a 4.2 mile run, to help change the common view that people who use the drug are lazy do-nothing stoners.

The 420 Games were joined by many different faces, some of which belonged to retired athletes who wanted to illustrate marijuana’s potential for helping with painful injuries.

“There is a lot of wear and tear playing football and fighting professionally,” said Kyle Kingsbury, a retired mixed martial arts fighter. “But pain management is something everyone in the world has to deal with, not just me.”

Despite the rising acceptance of cannabis and the gradual dropping of legal barriers surrounding its use, the stigma surrounding it still persists within many communities.  It’s the goal of the 420 Games founders to help break down these views and properly educate those who don’t partake as well as those who do on responsible usage.  Jim McAlpine explains it quite well on their website:

The 420 Games does not advocate that everyone should use cannabis. We are focused on teaching those who choose to do so how to do so in a healthy and responsible manner. We are equally focused on education and prevention for those who should not use cannabis, most importantly minors. We do not endorse the illegal or irresponsible use of marijuana.

The 420 Games participants are not ‘stoners’. While some of us use cannabis, some of us do not use it at all. The 420 Games are sporting events, NOT ‘smoke ins’. If you choose to use marijuana before, during or after our events, please make sure to do so discretely, legally and respectfully. All of us are responsible people who want to create a more positive outlook on cannabis use.”

The prize for the race, which was given to Chris Barnicle from LA, was $500 worth of medical marijuana delivered straight to your home.

“I threw up a lot. I’m finally able to take down water.” The participant was quoted as saying after the tiring run.  “I got a couple blisters, but I’m still pretty high, so I’m pretty good.”

Following each event, all participants over 21 will be treated to two hours of beer tasting and a performance by various popular bands.  There are many more events to come if you would like to get involved, with a golf tournament taking place August 29, and a paddle race in Lake Tahoe September 26, among several others.

About Jürgen Rae

Jürgen Rae

Jürgen is an avid writer. His love of creating content is only surpassed by his love of consuming it. When he isn’t surfing the web or hanging out with friends he can usually be found immersed in music production, sketching, or a good book.
Contact Jurgen: jurgen.rae@youthindependent.com