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  • Jesse Aguirre

Jamaica's Longest Running Ganja Festival Finally Declared an Exempt Event




To North Americans, Stepping High Festival is dubbed the Jamaican cannabis cup. To Jamaicans, the Stepping High Festival is THE Jamaican ganja festival or "the original ganja fest."

For eleven years the event had been staged underground, but this year, the Stepping High Festival has been declared an exempt event by Jamaica's Ministry of Justice. Stepping High promoter Lyndon Connell, obviously relieved, stated, "It was not easy. We have gone through a lot, but this is only the beginning ... there are still much greater things to come."

The promoter's expression of relieve was based on previous his experiences. For Stepping High's first public staging in March 2014, the festival's event permit was revoked just three days before the event. An appeal was subsequently made to the state, whereby the permit was reinstated the night before the event. Mr. Connell also recounted numerous times when the event, which was staged at his home in Negril, was shut down by the authoraties. When asked how he was able to have sustain the event throughout the years he said, "endless effort ... endless efforts made it happen."

The Stepping High Festival will have its 13th staging this year on March 5 and 6 at Cayenne Beach, Norman Manley Boulevard, Negril. The event features educational segments, live musical entertainment, and exhibitions of Jamaica's finest strains of ganja! This year the event will launch its exclusive Space Station and a much anticipated Canna-Fashion Show.

The event will draw an expected 10,000 participants to celebrate under this year's theme, "Building the ganja nation." Many are looking forward to all that Stepping High Festival will bring this, and many more years to come.



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