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Vancouver says 4/20 rally at Sunset Beach cost nearly a quarter million

A lot of people got higher than ever at this year’s 4/20 rallies in Vancouver. But so did the bill.

A joint news release from the city of Vancouver, the Vancouver park board and Vancouver police said the costs to manage and clean up after the rallies at Sunset Beach Park and the Vancouver Art Gallery on April 20 totalled $245,379 this year, after reviewing all costs associated with the unsanctioned event. That’s a 66 per cent increase over last year’s total of $148,000, which itself was a 60 per cent increase on 2015’s total cost of $92,500. The event appears to be gaining some serious momentum. 

It’s also $90,000 more than what was estimated as the cost for the Sunset Beach protest when organizers filed for a permit, and were denied by the Vancouver park board in early March.

That didn’t stop the 4/20 rally from taking place, however — it was larger than ever. The city estimated a whopping 40,000 attendees at peak time, up from 25,000 in 2016.

The park board will be invoicing the organizers of the Sunset Beach Park site for their share of expenses, the city said, although it’s not clear what that share will be. The city said they will also continue working to find an appropriate venue for next year’s event.