You know the old cliché: “Everyone who entered is a winner.”
But that was the stone cold truth last weekend north of San Francisco at the 15th annual Emerald Cup cannabis competition, expo, and smoke-out.
Every single entrant in the massive contest survived the test of California adult use cannabis legalization and implementation. It was a year where more than half of the pre-existing medical cannabis industry got wiped out by local regulations. Three-quarters of the cities in the state have banned legal cannabis activity.
“We have gone through quite a whirlwind,” said Carter Lash, founder of award-winning topical maker C.A.D. “But we’re happy to be here. It’s a big change for everyone and we’re trying to stay positive. A lot of people weren’t able to be here.”
Multi-generational farmers as well as industry newbies traded war stories and harvest buds with thrilled attendees Saturday and Sunday.
An award ceremony Sunday afternoon doled out trophies to the best California cannabis products in 24 categories. Willie Nelson popped in for a lifetime achievement award and director Kevin Smith busted up the crowd with a NSFW podcast taping.
Scroll down for some of our favorite pictures from Emerald Cup 2018.
NSFW: Director Kevin Smith and actor Jason Mewes record an episode of ‘Jay and Silent Bob Get Old’ Saturday. (David Downs/Leafly)
Packed Hall: Tens of thousands of cannabis industry and friends gathered north of San Francisco last weekend for two days to celebrate the end of the full-sun season. (David Downs/Leafly)
Missed The Cup?
Willie Nelson holds up his award, a custom Bluegrass “lamp” bubbler. Cup organizer Tim Blake has been trying to book Willie for years. (David Downs/Leafly)
Fire It Up: The Emerald Cup featured the world’s largest on-site consumption area and farmer’s market. (David Downs/Leafly)
Legendary Session: Borosilicate glass pipe pioneer Bob Snodgrass shared family-made cannabis and hits from a piece made by his son in the Dragonfly Earth Medicine teepees Sunday. (David Downs/Leafly)
Wookie Tech: A contestant hits hash vapor from the new, $400, Loto Legend magnetic induction dab rig, which debuted at the Cup. (David Downs/Leafly)
Seed Mania: Thousands of growers scooped up millions of dollars in cannabis seeds at the world’s largest genetic bazaar. (David Downs/Leafly)
Magic Beans: Highly coveted cannabis seeds by Exotic Genetix sold out in hours Saturday. (David Downs/Leafly)
Dream Weavers: Fans ogled contest entries arrayed like department store jewelry at the Cup. (David Downs/Leafly)
Hail to the Chief: First place licensed sungrown flower winner Ridge Line Farms’ Green Lantern is coming soon to retailers. (David Downs/Leafly)
Right Price: Grammy-nominated country artist Margot Price belts out a tune after introducing her new Willie’s Reserve sativa Pineapple Wonder. (David Downs/Leafly)
Hot Topical: The makers of Newell’s Botanicals Deep Skin Penetrating Roll-On celebrate a big win. (David Downs/Leafly)
Homegrown Champ: The Emerald Cup featured awards for personal cultivation as well. Second place flowers winner Paula Hudgins won for Wedding Cake. (David Downs/Leafly)
Christmas Cheer: Third place tincture winners Humboldt Apothecary celebrate sweet victory. (David Downs/Leafly)
LaLa Land: Los Angeles cannabis director Cat Packer said the city will not hold licensed cannabis events in 2019. (David Downs/Leafly)
Low-Key Titan: Roger Volodarsky—CEO of Puffco—provided Puffco Peaks for bring-your-own dabs sessions at the Puffco booth. (David Downs/Leafly)
Upvote: Hat pins in the shape of THC molecules and pineapples sold for $15 each. The Emerald Cup will return in 2019. (David Downs/Leafly)