Roosevelt Row in the downtown Phoenix Artists District, is regularly in the middle of shenanigans. The area’s most significant development dates back to between 1895 – 1930 and were once private homes. However, the founders and homesteaders of this once residential neighborhood would never have imagined a monthly block party, let alone a marijuana themed one.
First Friday is one of the largest monthly block parties and art walks in the nation. Artists, crafters, musicians, food trucks and more line the historic streets. Friday, April 15th, 2022 was an all-new first for this Friday, even though it wasn’t the first Friday.
The corner of Roosevelt on 5th street in the center of Roosevelt Row is the home of Buds Glass Joint. This locally owned head shop celebrated its first inaugural cannabis inspired event celebrating the beloved, marijuana holiday, four twenty, called Buds-A-Palooza.
The cannabis extravaganza filled up quickly and was busier than Walmart on Black Friday. In fact, it was so busy that you had to watch your friends’ live feeds just to find them. Throughout the span of the historical street was cannabis brand after cannabis brand.
After checking out all the brands, there wasn’t a shortage of marijuana related activities to keep you entertained. Many of the valley’s master glassblowers showed off their skill with a healthy competition. The comedy lounge sponsored by Zen Leaf had stoner jokes and puns that gave everyone a case of the giggles. If you just felt like chilling and watching a movie, that was an option too. Arizona Organix, provided an outdoor movie theater with nothing but stoner flicks. And what would a block party festival be, without live music from local and national bands, brought to you by Ogeez.
Even though the event inside was like a can of sardines (packed), passer’s by in the street stopped and stared. Some with the look of utter disbelief, others in total wonder and curiosity, but mostly looks of jealousy, as many stopped to take pictures.
After all, less than a decade ago, closing down a street and having an event dedicated to cannabis appeared to be just a dream. Now, it’s become a reality thanks to Buds Glass Joint. As cannabis becomes more and more mainstream, this hopefully won’t be the last block party, but Buds-A-Palooza was totally the first.