TYENDINAGA MOHAWK TERRITORY – From May 18 to 21st, 2018, Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory will play host to an unprecedented gathering of Indigenous people and their allies at the first annual Smoke Signals Indigenous Cannabis Cup.
The event was initiated by Smoke Signals Dispensary owner Jamie Kunkel, and its location in Tyendinaga is testimony to the rapid growth and expansion of the Indigenous cannabis industry in that community.
“This will likely be the largest gathering of Indigenous people connected to the cannabis plant in history,” says Kunkel, who is confident the event will shine a light on the role cannabis can play in improving the health of Indigenous peoples, and providing an alternative economic model for Indigenous communities.
Over the May 24 long weekend, thousands are expected to visit the Mohawk Territory to celebrate the many gifts of the plant and its derivatives. Attendees will come to play music, socialize, present educational workshops, sell their wares, partake in cannabis culture and camping overnight at the event grounds. They will also learn, share and network about cannabis production, safe consumption and the ever-growing list of the health, construction, environmental and economic benefits of cannabis and sister plant, hemp.
“Cup competitions for judging cannabis strains and products have been happening for decades,” says Kunkel. “But Indigenous peoples of Turtle Island and beyond have been growing and sharing for centuries. This is our moment to step forward and show the world.”
The gathering is occurring in the context of Canada’s impending cannabis legalization in the summer of 2018. It is open to everyone age 19 and older, and will be a dry event with no alcohol or hard drugs permitted.