The True Origin of 4/20: How High School Code Became a Global Phenomenon

Every year on April 20th, cannabis enthusiasts worldwide celebrate a day known as 4/20. But do you know the real story behind this iconic date? Join us as we journey back in time to uncover the fascinating origins of 4/20.

The Waldos and the Birth of 4/20:

In 1971, in Marin County, California, a group of high school students known as the Waldos stumbled upon a treasure map leading to a hidden cannabis crop. They agreed to meet at 4:20 p.m., after school activities, to search for the elusive “green gold.” While they never found the crop, “4:20” became their code for cannabis adventures.

Grateful Dead and the Spread of 4/20:

The Waldos had connections to the Grateful Dead, a band synonymous with the counterculture movement of the time. As the Dead toured, “4:20” began to spread among fans, embedding itself into the broader cannabis culture. High Times magazine played a significant role in catapulting “4/20” into global consciousness by publishing a flyer for a 4/20 cannabis gathering, further solidifying April 20th as a day for celebration within the community.

Today’s Significance:

4/20 has evolved from a private joke among friends to a global event where enthusiasts advocate for legalization, celebrate freedom, and enjoy a sense of community. From Amsterdam to Denver, 4/20 serves as a day to champion the cannabis cause, emphasizing freedom and unity.


The story of 4/20 is a testament to the power of friendship, music, and community. From its humble beginnings as a high school code to its status as a global phenomenon, the true origin of 4/20 reminds us of the enduring spirit of camaraderie and adventure that continues to shape cannabis culture today.

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Based in Metro Detroit, Michigan, Weed’s Great is a cannabis content company that is dedicated to creating engaging and informative content for cannabis lovers of all demographics. We produce videos, blogs, podcasts, and social media posts that are designed to be both entertaining and educational, with the goal of promoting responsible cannabis use!

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