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Byron Shire
February 26, 2024

Hemp festival moves from harvest to planting

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President of the Nimbin HEMP Embassy, the MardiGrass Organising Body (MOB) Michael Balderstone, says that Nimbin’s annual first weekend in May MardiGrass cannabis law reform protest and gathering has been postponed.

The new dates are set for early spring and the event will happen on September 16, 17 and 18.

Flood damage and water supply

Balderstone says the flood damage on the roads is the main reason but also that the Nimbin water supply is still severely limited. ‘Landslips are still taking their toll on the community. It’s just too soon.

‘So it will be a spring planting ceremony instead of a soggy harvest festival.’

Balderstone says the event needs the Town Hall and the Nimbin Showgrounds to be free for the weekend. ‘We were lucky to squeeze in as Nimbin is busy in September. The Annual Nimbin Show is on the last weekend and we appreciate they are letting us have MardiGrass the weekend before.

‘The World Cup Poetry Event is on the first weekend and Nimbin Fashion Show the second, both annual events also.

30th anniversary

‘The MardiGrass program for this year’s 30th anniversary was pretty much sorted for May but this will give us more time for the historical display we’re planning. So anyone with photos or movies of early MardiGrass protests please get in touch, especially from the nineties.’

Balderstone says most people involved in this year’s event have confirmed they will be available for September and they expect the program to just get better between now and then. ‘Meanwhile the ground will hopefully dry up for the Hemp Olympix events and Legalise Cannabis will get a huge vote in the election and the new PM Albo will be forced to finally listen and we will be allowed to grow our own weed and the mean saliva testing will be scrapped in favour of sensible sobriety tests.

Balderstone says he wanted to apologise on behalf of the MOB to anyone who has travel plans upset by the change of dates. ‘The spring planting ceremony will be awesome though. It’s gotta get legal soon!’


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