ANN ARBOR – The Ann Arbor Hash Bash will be returning this year as a virtual variety-show-style production, free to the public, featuring activists and entertainers from around the state and country.

The emergence of Covid-19’s new “Variant of Concern” on the University of Michigan campus prompted the committee to make this year’s Hash Bash virtual again rather than in-person, which could turn into a super spreader event,.

Former Fox 2 News Anchor Anqunette Sarfoh has been named Master of Ceremonies. She will appear Wednesday at 1 pm on to provide more details.

Also scheduled to speak virtually will be Attorney General Dana Nessel, Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (D-MI), Senator Jeff Irwin (D-Ann Arbor), former Detroit Lion, Calvin Johnson, and former Detroit Red Wing, Darren McCarty.This year’s event will focus on commemorating accomplishments major and minor, but also on the need for federal legalization and repairing the harm inflicted by the federal war on drugs.

The Committee is not only partnering with business to make a successful broadcast, but also to benefit two charities, the John Sinclair Foundation and the Michigan Cannabis Prisoner Freedom Fund.

“Hash Bash is committed to the advocacy of federal cannabis legalization and to giving cannabis users and patients a voice. We are excited to carry on this tradition with a new and innovative format that our attendees can feel safe attending,” said Sarfoh, who is a medical marijuana patient.The 2021Hash Bash Livestream will begin at the traditional time of High Noon on Saturday April 3. Returning speakers include John Sinclair. Entertainment will be provided by American Idol finalist Laith Al-Saadi, and Tom Wall, and cannabis enthusiast and drag queen, Laganja Estranja.

In addition to the politicians and celebrities, many notable cannabis activists, personalities, and other cannabis reform organizations will make an appearance. Among them are Decriminalize Nature A2, Rick Thompson and the Social Revolution, Jazz Cabbage Café, Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP), The Redemption Foundation, National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), West MI Cannabis Guild, Cannabis Caucus of the MI Democratic Party, and more.

“In the interest of public safety, we felt it was our duty to continue, full-steam ahead, with a digital production that can accommodate the needs of the community and continue to educate, activate, protest, and entertain in true keeping with the traditional event.” said longtime organizer, Nick Zettell. “We cannot wait until next year when we can all gather together on the Diag to continue this wonderful tradition safely and confidently.”

The Ann Arbor Hash Bash is one of the longest running cannabis legalization rallies and served as a mainstay of Michigan’s cannabis community for five decades. The first Hash Bash took place on the University of Michigan Diag in 1972 as a protest against the Controlled Substances Act. Hash Bash is a countercultural event and serves as a forum for cannabis users and advocates to speak out against injustices and promote sensible policy reforms.