The History Of High Times

May 05, 2023 3 min read

The History and Evolution of High Times: A Cannabis Lifestyle and Culture Brand

The Origins of High Times

High Times, a cannabis lifestyle and culture brand, has been a beacon for the marijuana community since its inception in 1974. Founded by Tom Forçade, a political activist, the magazine was originally created to serve as a platform for the counterculture movement and their beliefs in cannabis legalization.

high times magazine history

The Growth of High Times

As the magazine grew in popularity, Forçade continued to push for cannabis legalization and created the first "Smoke-In" protest in Washington D.C. in 1975. This event would later become the iconic "420" celebration that is still observed by cannabis enthusiasts worldwide.

Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, High Times became a staple in the cannabis community, with a loyal following of readers and a reputation for being the go-to source for all things marijuana-related. The magazine also became known for its annual Cannabis Cup events, where growers from around the world would compete to be crowned the best in various categories.


High Times Under New Leadership

In 2017, High Times underwent a significant transformation with a new CEO, Adam Levin, and a plan to expand the brand beyond just a magazine and events company. Levin's goal was to turn High Times into a publicly traded company, which would allow for investments in cannabis-related businesses and acquisitions of new properties.


High Times Today

Today, High Times is still a leading source for cannabis culture and lifestyle content, with a print magazine, digital content, and a strong presence on social media. The company is also moving forward with its plans to expand its offerings and invest in the booming cannabis industry.


high times magazine 2023

The Evolution of High Times Over The Years

1974: High Times is founded by Tom Forcade in New York City.

1975: The first issue of High Times is published in the summer.

1977: High Times hosts the first Cannabis Cup in Amsterdam.

1980: Tom Forcade passes away and is succeeded as publisher by Michael Kennedy.

1988: Steven Hager becomes editor-in-chief of High Times and introduces the concept of strain reviews.

1991: High Times launches the Cannabis Cup in the United States, starting in San Francisco.

1994: High Times is acquired by Trans-High Corporation, which also owns the marijuana cultivation magazine, Sinsemilla Tips.

1998: High Times launches its website,

2004: High Times launches its first-ever music festival, the High Times Doobie Awards.

2011: High Times is acquired by Oreva Capital, a private equity firm.

2014: High Times celebrates its 40th anniversary with a special issue featuring interviews with key figures in the marijuana movement.

2017: High Times acquires Green Rush Daily, an online publication focused on cannabis news and culture.

2018: High Times announces plans to go public and raises $5 million in a Regulation A+ crowdfunding campaign.

2019: High Times acquires Dope Magazine and enters into a merger agreement with a company called Origo Acquisition Corporation to become a publicly-traded company.

2020: The merger with Origo Acquisition Corporation falls through and High Times withdraws its plans to go public.

2021: High Times announces a partnership with Red Light Holland to distribute and market legal psilocybin products in the United States.



Overall, High Times has continued to evolve and adapt to the changing landscape of the cannabis industry. The company's IPO, acquisition of DOPE Magazine, and expansion of business offerings

Also in The Grind

Cannabis Marketing Careers: Navigating Compliance and Innovation
Cannabis Marketing Careers: Navigating Compliance and Innovation

April 07, 2024 3 min read

Continue Reading
Cannabis and Wellness: Exploring the Role of Marijuana in Self-Care
Cannabis and Wellness: Exploring the Role of Marijuana in Self-Care

March 31, 2024 3 min read

Continue Reading
Green Business Opportunities: Launching Your Own Cannabis Startup
Green Business Opportunities: Launching Your Own Cannabis Startup

March 24, 2024 4 min read

Continue Reading