World Hemp Festival Rolls Into Oregon

World Hemp Fest 2001July 20-22 Advance tickets at FASTIXX. Three-day camping pass $22.50 or $12.50 per day. No Dogs.Info @ (541) 995-7752.

Hemp, hemp, glorious hemp. Hemp, the miracle plant, that can be harvested to provide a vast array of products such as clothing fiber, pulp for paper, cooking oil, mild medicines and even filters for beer, rolls into the summer spotlight with the fourth annual World Hemp Festival. The festival aims, like the previous years, to bring people together in celebration and explanation of hemp, the very dynamic, but oft misunderstood and maligned, plant. The festivities light up noon Friday, July 20, with Liquid Jeanie taking the stage, and tokes on through the long weekend, until sometime approximating Sunday, July 22 at 9 p.m.

The festival takes place in Harrisburg, a small, hazy town 15 miles north of Eugene, on a five-acre farm and is touted as being both a celebration and education of the glorious plant. The education comes from over 300 booths showcasing hemp products as well as informational speakers. While the celebration comes from 22 bands and performers spread luxuriously over what promise to be three very hot days.

For the social activist, organizers are sponsoring a signature contest to promote an initiative to the Oregon State Legislature in the hopes of legalizing marijuana for adults over 21. The individual with the most signatures wins an all expense paid trip to Belize.

Friday also sees one of the original bong boys, Tommy Chong, of the classic Cheech & Chong, hit the stage with his high humor and smokin’ good comedy. Following Tommy are Portland’s own Higher Ground, what Relix Magazine calls “a highly polished quartet with intricate picking, soaring vocal harmonies and rock ‘n’ roll rhythms.” Following Higher Ground, are the merry music makers from the Big Apple, the Zen Tricksters playing their own eclectic form of communal music. From Zimbabwe, Thomas Mapfumo and his band Blacks Unlimited close out Friday’s festivities. Mapfumo calls their unique blend of music and social commentary “chimurenga,” a Shona word meaning to fight or struggle.

Saturday’s lineup features local bands J. Mack and 4th Plane Jaiant. Also slated for Saturday night is Scott Hucabay’s multi-textured electric guitar, the Freedom Tribe’s powerful reggae and world harmonies and Abakadubi. Finishing things off for Saturday night is Lost at Last, a band capable of blending pop, rock, trance, funk and folk into an unique energetic integration.

Sunday, classified as “family day,” culminates with the great, grand jester himself Ken Kesey. Joining Kesey on stage will be Ken Babbs and a bus full of pranksters. Closing out the festival are Shamir, a reggae/hip-hop band from Ghana, and Grupo Antifaz from Mexico.

Tickets are through Fastixx and prices vary depending if you’re spending the entire weekend or just a day. For more information on the event call (541) 995-6907, or check out And for hemp, glorious hemp, check out, or the proverbial