Organizers of the Chalice California marijuana festival announced they’ve postponed the event and will be issuing refunds after the city refused to give them permission to let attendees buy and consume cannabis on site.
“At this juncture, we believe it is best and safest to all of our guests,” the Chalice team wrote in a July 4 message to ticket holders.
A separate post continued: “We must take a stand that cannabis culture and business brings value to cities.”
No future date or venue has been announced, and organizers didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
Bassnectar, Ludacris and other acts were set to perform at the marijuana-themed festival, which was originally expected to attract some 35,000 people to the San Bernardino County fairgrounds in Victorville July 13-15. But new laws require festival organizers to get permission from their local city or county if they want a state license that permits marijuana sales and consumption. After they got shut out by the city, the parent company behind Chalice on June 19 sued Victorville and the state, touting the event’s solid safety record and estimates that it had a $33 million impact on the high desert in 2017.
At a special meeting June 29, the Victorville City Council officially refused to approve the event, saying it conflicts with a city ordinance that bans all marijuana sales.
Chalice organizers said they’ll be refunding all tickets within the next 14 days.
Festival founder Doug Dracup wrote on Instagram that he’d rather postpone the show and “do it right” than put on a show that isn’t up to their standards.
Ticketholders took to social media to express their frustration.
“We’re out $500 because our Airbnb host wouldn’t give us a full refund after finding out this event got postponed,” one person wrote on Facebook. “We, the attendees, are losing a lot of money because of this.”
A few social media fans showed solidarity, with one person who planned to fly in from New Jersey for the event posting: “Just want to let you guys know I stand with you. … Keep on fighting for this culture.”