Organizers hope Mid-South Hemp Fest helps end stigmas about cannabis

(WMC Action News 5)
Updated: Apr. 19, 2019 at 10:00 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - A massive new event seeks to continue breaking down the stigmas surrounding cannabis use.

It comes as a push to legalize medical cannabis once again failed in the Tennessee legislature.

The Greensward in Overton Park is getting closer to being ready for Saturday's Mid-South Hemp Fest. The weather is expected to be much better for a festival that promises to bring in a lot of curious people.

"This has turned into one of the largest of this event in Tennessee," said Lee Otts.

Otts is with Norml the National Organization to Reform Marijuana Law, the group putting on the Mid-South Hemp Fest on the Greensward in Overton Park on April 20, or 4-20, as well as Whatever Smoke Shop.

The tents have to go up despite the cold temperatures and rain. The festival starts at 10 a.m. and is described as an all-ages educational event to raise awareness about the benefits of the cannabis industry.

Otts says you can get educated, buy some of the hemp products like edibles, flower, and oil. There will also be samples.

"We have a little over a 100 vendors, dozens of food trucks and the vendors include Hemp Farmers CBD vendors, artists and local businesses,” Otts said.

Hemp is federally legal in the United States. It comes from the same cannabis plant that produces marijuana. The hemp products have little if any THC in them, the chemical in the plant that makes you high.

However, that doesn't mean marijuana is legal except in states that it is. There was a push in Tennessee to legalize medical marijuana, but the proposed bills were dropped until next year.

Medical marijuana is legal in Arkansas. The dispensaries should get their marijuana by the middle of May.

The Mid-South Hemp Fest runs from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. There will be bands playing all day and plenty of people to answer any questions you might have.

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