Crowne Plaza Hotel Cancels This Weekend's Arizona 420 Festival, Cites Payment Default

Categories: News

Benjamin Leatherman
Attendees of last year's Arizona 420 Festival.

Sorry to harsh your mellow, stoners, but we've got some bad news. If you were planning to attend the three-day Arizona 420 Festival this weekend at the Crowne Plaza Hotel -- including seeing Fishbone or any of the four dozen other acts booked to play the event -- said plans may have gone up in smoke Thursday night.

News broke Thursday that hotel management has canceled the marijuana-friendly festival less than 24 hours before its scheduled kickoff Friday due to an alleged "breach of contract" and "payment default" on the part of the festival's promoter.

In a press release sent out Thursday announcing the 420 festival's cancellation, Crowne Plaza general manger Adam Stanchina lays out several claims against CJ Johnson of E-Concert Live, the company that has organized the event the past several years. That includes alleging that the promoter was remiss in paying certain fees to the hotel, which apparently caused the hotel to pull the plug.

"Our efforts up to the last minute to collect contractually required payments from the promoter, [CJ Johnson] were not successful as late as this afternoon well past all deadlines, forcing the hotel with no choice but to terminate the agreement," Stanchina says in the release. "We are disappointed, and certainly hope this regrettable action caused by the promoter creates minimal inconvenience to any guests who may have been planning to attend the event."

"The simple fact is that Mr. Johnson failed repeatedly to meet his obligations to make scheduled payments for us to host this event as very clearly stated in the agreement. "

We've heard a few unconfirmed rumors that the issue may not be as one-sided as hotel management is claiming.

Messages to Johnson from New Times seeking comment on the matter -- or, frankly, for his side of the story -- had not been returned as of this writing.

A source with E-Concert Live stated that they're attempting to find a new venue for the festival, which typically includes a slew of performances by reggae, hip-hop, and rock acts, as well as an enormous amount of vendors and dispensaries selling their wares.


Johnson sent a lengthy message to New Times via Facebook early this morning regarding E-Concert Live's side of the story, which you can read after the jump.

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That bitch in the picture is a tweaker. I know her peraonally. Dumbest chick you will ever meet lmao! She's 36 and prego right now lmao!


I was gonna run a festival...

...until I got high.


a bunch of fucking stoners couldn't pull something together, what a surprise.


I was set to perform this weekend. I didnt find out until I saw it on the news. This is shameful and the fact that CJ has yet to come forth with ANY information makes me wonder what happened to all the money?


They failed last year trying to take control of the ticket sales and room bookings,  as the real promoters of the event are not involved this year (llc and trade name check kiddos) it was predictable this would happen.  Sad that these people tried to do it own their own and have such little connection to the industry, hence no rooms booked.  Their claims of thousands of tickets being sold is very far fetched might I add.  Just look at their social media response to their posts,  almost non existent. What a waste,  the hotel will sue them for the breech,  the vendors should sue for their losses as souls anyone dumb enough to buy a ticket to anything Econcertlive promotes as their own. 

So much more to this story than is being told,  so much more

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