History was made at the first ever Oregon Cannabis Growers Fair
I have lived my entire life in Oregon. That is a fact I am quite proud of. I have always loved the State of Oregon, and I can't imagine living anywhere else.
I have traveled to many states which are considered to be 'cannabis friendly,' and I have never been to a state yet that has cannabis as good and as cheap as it is in Oregon.
I have seen cannabis in other states as good as it is in Oregon, but it always comes with a hefty price tag. And I have definitely seen cannabis cheaper in other states, but it is always low quality.
Oregon has always struck the best balance between the two, with growers making it possible. Oregon is home to some of the best cannabis growers in the country, and recently I was able to witness a lot of Oregon growers participate in a history making plant competition.
Oregon Cannabis Growers Fair - the first of its kind
A competition in which growers compete by bringing their best plant is not new. That basic element of an event has been done many times before. I myself have attended a handful of them all over the West Coast.
The Oregon Cannabis Growers Fair, which featured a live plant competition and was held on August 13-14, was different in one very big way - the event was held at the Oregon State Fairgrounds.
I know of at least one other cannabis event that was held at the same location, however, it didn't feature a live plant competition. I am not aware of any live plant competition ever held on a government property like the Oregon Cannabis Growers Fair (although I could be wrong, feel free to let me know if so).
To make the event truly historic, the top 9 plants from the competition get to go on to be displayed at the Oregon State Fair, which I definitely know has never happened before.
Cannabis is Oregon's newest farm crop
I attended the event, and I can say from first hand experience, it was amazing. Everyone at the event was so excited, with many people telling me that it was the first event they had ever attended.
I asked people what brought them to the event. The most frequent answer, by far, was that people wanted to see history being made.
One grower, who explained to me that he had been growing for decades in Oregon, even teared up a bit as he explained to me that he can't believe how far things have come.
The point of the event was not to try to convince non-consumers to consume cannabis, it was to celebrate Oregon's cannabis growers, which as I already stated, are some of the best on the planet.
Oregon has long been a leader in agriculture, leading the nation in crop production. The Oregon Farm Bureau was in attendance at the Oregon Cannabis Growers Fair, which I felt was a big validation that cannabis has become a true farm crop.
Oregon is already #1 in the nation for Christmas trees, hazelnuts, loganberries, black raspberries, ryegrass seed, orchard grass seed, crimson clover, sugar beets for seed, red clover seed, fescue seed, blackberries, boysenberries, potted azaleas, and peppermint according to the Oregon Farm Bureau.
And the winners are...
There were three categories to the live plant competition, which was matched with an expo floor and educational presentations to round out the event. The three plant competition categories were indica, sativa, and hybrid.
There were dozens of entries, with cannabis cultivation expert Ed Rosenthal serving as one of the judges of the competition.
"The first thing is health and to make sure they don't have infections and then to make sure they ... don't have nutrient deficiencies. Then, we look at the structure of the plant: Has it been getting as much sun as it should be getting? Is it sunburned?" Ed Rosenthal said according to ABC News, in regards to how the winners were selected.
The 1st place winner for both the indica and sativa categories was Uplifted Farms. I talked to the Uplifted Team at the VIP after party. It turns out one of the crew used to manage the indoor garden store I used to frequent a handful of years ago, which I thought was a very cool.
The 1st place winner in the hybrid category was Canna Manna. The 1st place winners, along with the second and third place finishers, will all have their plants displayed at the Oregon State Fair.
The entire Oregon Cannabis Growers Fair was open to people 21 years and older, and the plants displayed in a greenhouse are open to fair-goers 21 years and older.
With history being made, people are already looking forward to next year
I talked to a lot of growers at the event who really enjoyed the event, and can't wait for next year's event to roll around. Many of them expressed an interest in competing next year, and I have to assume the amount of growers is going to increase significantly.
Heck, I have had visions of entering the competition myself! Ribbons were given out for first, second, and third place. I was told by Mary Lou Burton, one of the event organizers, one of the ribbon winners was even given to a home cultivator.
I don't know if 'No Consideration Farms' (which is what I'm calling my garden) will be up to the task of winning the competition next year, but I definitely think it would still be fun to enter, albeit not in a history making capacity.
I tip my hat to the event organizers and their teams, specifically Don Morse of the Oregon Cannabis Business Council and all around event organizing legend Mary Lou Burton. I will never know how they convinced the State of Oregon to allow the event, but I don't have to, because it's now in the history books!
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