420 Touri$m–Bringing Money to Humboldt Now
The ancient redwood rain forests pull a tide of visitors to stand awestruck beneath their canopies every year. More recently, marijuana entices tourists to Humboldt (and, of course, Mendocino.) Some people think we need to wait for legalization to market to those travelers. I don’t think so. Tourists already come here to experience the cannabis culture. We need to advertise what we have and provide more sites to seduce travelers into slowing down and delighting in all we have to offer.
I’ve had several out-of-state (one out of country visitor) contact me and ask me to point them to 420 friendly sites. Recently, one agreed to let me post below his email he wrote to tell me about his experiences. I’m sharing it here so others can see what potential this area has.
Our times up in the hills was awesome. Garberville was [an] awesome, charming little town with some amazing people. The first night when we got up there, we went to Garberville and went to Cecil’s and had some amazing food after a long day driving up the 1 and making many stops along the way to enjoy the scenery.
Then we went to Ray’s to buy some camping supplies and some food. (We bought some oven roasting bags, too, as a little souvenir from Southern Humboldt). We met and talked to a number of people and everyone was really cool–quiet at first but way more open than any of the farmers I have ever known in the midwest. I loved it.
I got the Camo Cowboy CD from The Hemp Connection, its great. (We stopped in Kansas on the way back to Minnesota to visit my dad, and he liked the cd a lot too.) We camped in Richardson Grove State Park the first night and we camped near the really old grove you mentioned to me the second night in the Humboldt State Park.
I never got to see my dad’s friend’s 215 [The visitor hoped to hook up with an old acquaintance of his father’s who grows outside] but I ended up getting to see an organic indoor 215 in Arcata and I helped the guy identify that he had a potassium deficiency. He asked if I was a farmer because I was wearing a T-shirt I bought in Garberville that says, ‘No in November’ and I told him it was just a souvenir and that I was from MN but after a bit, he said it sounded like I had more experience than him and wanted my help. It was really cool, but I have been in lots of indoor gardens, I wanted to see the ladies in the sunshine.
Regardless, the trip was amazing and I can’t wait to come back. After talking with my dad, I think we are going to try to come back to Northern CA for a couple weeks in Nov. Are there any specific events going on in Southern Humboldt that would be good to catch?
I saw a lot and met a lot of great people and it was really awesome.
My favorite point in the trip by far was walking among the old forests, smoking sweet tasting bud. The forests were amazing. I didn’t want to run the risk of doing business with people that I don’t know so I brought some super top grade Organic Indoor along with me. It wasn’t quite as sweet as if it had been some local outdoor, but it was still a super amazing experience to have good organic smoke and be in some of the most beautiful land in the world, and to think that this fine cannabis wouldn’t exist were it not for the incredibly significant role the people in Northern California played over the last few decades. It was a purely sublime moment. Looking up through the trees, walking through the woods, passing a joint with friends. It was perfect.
We ate lots of good food. In addition to Cecil’s, we ate at the Paradise [Grill] Cafe in Garberville and some seafood restaurant in Eureka. So much good food.
…On this roadtrip, in addition to being in Northern California, we also were in the Bay area as well as Denver and Boulder, CO and, everywhere we went, people were excited to hear stories from Humboldt and wanted to know what we did up there.
I think that there is potential for huge money in tourism in Humboldt. My friends and I are a great example, we are a bunch of poor college kids that drove across the country just to come to the Emerald Triangle and to experience that culture. … If there were more tourist attractions specific to the cannabis culture I am sure we would have spent more money, and legalization would allow for much more forward tourist attractions (i.e historical museums, ‘a walk through a garden’, A big labyrinth of 15 foot tall hemp plants, local music and art, etc) Also, if people were aware of how much the development of the plant that we have today came from out there, not Europe, it may draw people for historic reasons.
Currently, cannabis consumers come from all over to experience our culture and our parks just like this man did. Think how much our community could prosper if we provided marijuana centered places for people to go (think museum, 420 friendly motels, a small medical garden outside available for people to tour, etc.) None of those places are illegal. Why not market them also? A local guide to cannabis and non cannabis attractions would provide opportunities for travelers to linger and to leave with souvenirs (t-shirts, postcards, local foods, even oven bags as well as hand crafted items such as pipes, hemp clothing, and art.)
We need to stop being afraid of one of our communities biggest assets and, instead, revel in our reputation and offer others more opportunities to enjoy what we take for granted.
Related Articles that I recommend:
- Humboldt Farm Report #8: Whither or Wither? (lafiga.firedoglake.com)