Festive toastFestive toast

Cannabis Culture Awards 2014

27th November 2014, a unique company gathered together in the packed-to-capacity Hemp Gallery in Amsterdam for the presentation of the Cannabis Culture Awards 2014. Former super-smuggler Howard Marks, alias 'Mr. Nice', and Marc and Jodie Emery, 'The Prince and Princess of Pot', received the awards Ben Dronkers and Todd McCormick.

Cannabis Culture Awards 2014Cannabis Culture Awards 2014
Private jet


Since 2004, the Cannabis Culture Awards have been given to people or organizations that have made an outstanding contribution to the world of cannabis. The presence of Howard Marks took some effort; after a cancelled flight, Mr Nice was eventually flown in from Manchester on a private jet. The ceremony began with an emotional contribution from Dan Skye, chief reporter of the American magazine High Times. Skye spoke of the problems that the High Times Cannabis Cup has faced this year, its 27th edition. Their exhibition had to be cancelled at the very last minute, under threat of a police raid.

Ben Dronkers and Howard MarksBen Dronkers and Howard Marks
British humour

 

It was a cheerful afternoon, certainly when Howard Marks was finally able to join the other guests. His illness has clearly had no influence on his dry British humour. Jodie Emery made a great impression on everyone present with an emotional appeal against the terrible effects of the war on drugs. She emphasized the importance of working together with all parties to make the legalization of cannabis possible, especially the parties that are still against this: 'Never turn your back on someone who disagrees with you.'
 

Marc and Jodie EmeryMarc and Jodie Emery
Once again made history


Previous CCA winner Todd McCormick presented the award to Marc and Jodie Emery; Howard Marks received his from Ben Dronkers. A highpoint was the unveiling of a portrait of Howard Marks, painted by drum and bass star Goldie. The work was bought this week by the Hash, Marihuana & Hemp Museum and Marks was visibly touched by it. “Today, we have once again made history,” said Ben Dronkers. “These people are enormously important to international cannabis culture. And they have paid a high price for their dedication: years in prison. To me, they are freedom fighters.”

Marc and Jodie EmeryMarc and Jodie Emery
Marc and Jodie Emery

 

The winners have all, in their own way, made a great contribution to the dissemination of the plant and the struggle against its prohibition. Since the 90s, Marc Emery has been the driving force behind the legalization movement in Canada. With his company Hemp BC he sold millions of cannabis seeds; he invested the bulk of the profits in activism and media such as Cannabis Culture Magazine and Pot TV. Following a long legal battle, he was detained for four years in an American prison, from which he was granted early release in August this year. During his imprisonment, his wife Jodie took on his roles in a more than admirable manner.
 

Howard MarksHoward Marks
Howard Marks

 

Howard Marks, alias Mr Nice, was the world’s greatest hash smuggler throughout the seventies and eighties. Marks was no ordinary smuggler; he studied at Oxford, maintained contact with the British Secret Service and limited his activities strictly to cannabis. For years he evaded the police, but eventually he spent seven years in one of the most infamous prisons in America. . Following his release Marks wrote a highly successful autobiography, which was made into a film in 2010. He has given hundreds of interviews, lectures and speeches in which he argues eloquently and spiritedly for the legalisation of cannabis.

 

AudienceAudience
International cannabis scene

 

The presentation of the Cannabis Culture Awards 2014 was hosted by Michael Schaap, known from his VPRO television series 'De Hokjesman'. There was entertainment, and short films about those being honoured. A great many prominent people from the international cannabis scene attended the awards, including previous winner of the CCA Dr Freek Polak, John Sinclair, Mila 'Hash Queen of Amsterdam' Jansen, Robert C. Clarke and Doede 'Nederwiet' de Jong.