High hopes for drug petition

R.J. Jennings plays bass for Cinna The Poet during the festival.

R.J. Jennings plays bass for Cinna The Poet during the festival.

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The 10th annual Cannabis Revival may be over, but Kelly Maddy’s job isn’t. He still has 4,900 signatures to get before next fall.

The Joplin Sensible Sentencing Initiative, a petition to decriminalize marijuana, received 250-300 signatures during this year’s Cannabis Revival, but that’s just the beginning.

Maddy, president of the Joplin Chapter of NORML (National Organization for Reform of Marijuana Laws), plans to have tabling spots at Discount Smokes and Liquor on and off all year. He also plans to attend community events and conventions in Joplin to get signatures.

“We really want to reach out to professional citizens in Joplin.” Maddy said.

He believes the festival had a turnout of about 5,000 people over the course of the day with the peak being mid-afternoon with more than 1,000 during Cinna the Poet’s set.

The festival also raised a record amount of money this year, receiving more than $1,200 between donations and merchandise.

“One guy actually came up and put $500 in the bucket,” Maddy said.

Maddy was also pleased to see how well the crowd responded to the speakers and the fact that there were no confrontations with local law enforcement.

“I just really want to thank everyone for coming out and supporting the cause,” Maddy said.

For more information on the Joplin Sensible Sentencing Initiative or getting involved with NORML persons may visit Joplinnorml.org.