No, You Cannot Smoke Weed at the Calgary Stampede

The Calgary Stampede is, first and foremost, about getting unbelievably inebriated.

However, organizers of this year’s event – on now until July 14th – are being very particular about which legal sources of intoxication will be tolerated.

Translation: Guests are not allowed to smoke weed at the 2019 Calgary Stampede. Alcohol, of course, is encouraged in abundance. But what’s really peculiar is that the event will cater to tobacco smokers.

“For the comfort of all guests, smoking of tobacco, e-cigarettes or other products that produce a vapour or smoke are allowed only in designated smoking areas. Marijuana (for medical purposes or otherwise) and illegal drugs may NOT be consumed on Stampede Park property,” reads the event’s Terms of Entry.

It should be noted that those who are caught smoking marijuana won’t be fined or euthanized – like the animals bringing this pageantry to life – but will instead be asked kindly not to.

So why not just offer designated cannabis smoking areas as with tobacco? “We’re just following suit with the City of Calgary bylaws and as a public gathering place for the community and a real focus on families, we’ve decided not to apply for a special event licence,” Calgary Stampede spokesperson Jennifer Booth said.

Ah, yes, darts and moonshine – real pillars of a healthy family environment.

But ok, whatever, it’s their event and they don’t have to allow cannabis if they don’t want to. The real problem, and where it gets legal, is prohibiting the use of cannabis for medical purposes.

“Leaving the site to medicate is not always an option for people who are severely ill,” said Gordon Hayes, director of events with the Calgary Cannabis Club.

Indeed. Maybe next year.