Tommy Chong Makes Surprise Appearance at Cannabis Cup

Despite reports of its cancellation, High Times' 27th Annual Cannabis Cup in Amsterdam soldiered on. "We are dedicated to the success of the event no matter the struggle," the magazine posted on Facebook.

Just days before the scheduled start of the Dutch Cup on Nov. 23, High Times lost the Expo venue, Radion, leaving all the vendors up in the air for a new location. A limited Expo was hastily set up at the Melkveg, where High Times hosts nightly music events. 

"This morning we were informed that if were to proceed with the Cannabis Cup Expo the event would be shut down and all participants would be arrested," High Times reported in the post, Turmoil at Amsterdam Cup. "We want everyone to know that seminars will continue as scheduled on Monday and Tuesday at the Melkweg. We will announce the location of Wednesday’s and Thursday’s seminars in the next 24 hours. Concerts and the Cannabis Cup awards show remain scheduled. We still intend to have a terrific Cannabis Cup experience. We’ll be seeing you at the seminars, in the coffeeshops and at the Melkweg concerts."

High Times has had problems with Dutch authorities for several years, going back to 2011, when the Expo was raided and shut down by Amsterdam police. 

Cannabis Cup attendees enter the Melkweg in Amsterdam. Dutch authorities have tried to shut down the 27-year-old event. (High Times photo)

"Here are the new rules that we must follow," High Times explained:

"1) Expo attendees and those working the booths will only be allowed up to 5 grams of personal cannabis or hash.

2) Security will be on hand to search bags and back bags and will confiscate amounts over the 5 grams.

3) Solvent-based cannabis extracts are not legal under Dutch law. You will not be allowed to bring shatter, wax or torches into the Expo.

4) Vendors are not allowed to distribute or share cannabis or cannabis-related products with the attendees. The mayor’s office is strictly enforcing this NO cannabis distribution law - to smoke at the Expo you will need to bring your own."

The Cup concluded on Nov. 27 with the award ceremony, during which Marc Emery was inducted into the Counterculture Hall of Fame by fellow Canadian pot star, Tommy Chong. Rebelution and Dirty Heads also perfomed at the show. The Coffeeshop Cannabis Cup went to Barney's for Cookies Kush. Check out all the winners here.

Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.