The Weedly had an opportunity to sit down with Chris Aldridge, owner and executive producer for Clone-A-Palooza, (a.k.a. Weedstock), a camping and music festival that focuses on showcasing multitudes of local talent. Aldridge is now in his fth year with this event, which started due, in part, to “having a lot of friends who are artists, and upon my own arrival in Tacoma around ve years ago from the south Seattle area, I noticed a lot of places my friends had to play were closing and/or charging them to play. I don’t have the resources at the moment to open my own venue, but soon!” says Aldridge.

Where did Clone-A-Palooza start?

On a privately owned piece of property (formerly a wine vineyard that burned down) in Okanogan County is where we started originally with a very small budget, little to no sound and lighting and only two days with about six or seven perfor- mances each day.

Where is it being held, and what are some highlights of the event?

A privately owned campground on Vashon Island I've stayed at and brought friends and family to numerous of times to count. Anyone who's camped on Vashon knows where I’m talking about. It is the only legal campground on the island due to development moratoriums as far as I know. I can't an- nounce the spot legally until the permits are issued by King County unfortunately. But I think anyone can follow along and gure it out. For the rst time, we will be holding tryouts to get into the main event. Our alumni roster we've worked with is up to about 75 now, and since there's no way we can t them all in anymore, we pick a few of the best of our alumni to headline each of the "CPV: The Tryout Series" shows; with a few "new to Clone-A-Palooza" artists and bands playing to get into the main event. On schedule for this year's events are (T in parenthesis indicates a tryout band, all others so far are alumni; there is still space for interested artists and bands to tryout as well):

Big shout out to all the artists who are on the Uncle Sam's

American Bar & Grill Summer Play-In Series – much love: Mechanism, Of cial Facebook, Fifteen Stitches, The Sky Rained Heroes, MotaMouth Jones, Los Ghost, Manch, Malev- olent Fallen Kings, Salem Knights, The Bangalores, Stoned Evergreen Travelers, Taco Ninjas, American Sideshow, Cirka: Sik Reverent Circle, Nothing Sounds Good, It Gets Worse (T), The 7th Crow (T), Kali Souljah (T), Knawledge (T), The Astral Bodiez (T), Hooker st, and The Dope Show.

What is your hope for this year’s event?

To continue to grow the Clone-A-Palooza brand, promote local musicians, build awareness that these types of events can be pulled off peacefully and successfully, and further the ties that have created "The Fam" we as a group are part of. The long-term goal is to open a venue in Pierce County that will be called "Clone-A-Palooza Presents: The Stage." It will be a music venue that happens to serve beer, rather than a bar rst, that happens to have shows, which the latter is ne, but the scene needs more of the former.

How many people and businesses were involved in putting this together?

Lots of people are involved, from the managers to stage crew, sound, lighting, ticketing, vendors, and on and on. And, of course, the bands, comedians, and host properties. The part I'm most proud of, however, is that none of the people we work with are from a "company" so to speak. It is simply a group of friends who've decided to dedicate their time and energy to a great cause, and that cause is building and supporting a cannabis-friendly music community. I want to throw out a huge thank you to all the people who make this thing go. You all know who you are and you rock! We have no corporate, or even local sponsors. As far as administratively, you’re talking to it. It's me. I stew up the ideas, book the bands, own the sound equipment, do the advertising, design the yers, edit the videos, book the venues, organize the managers, hire the interns, promote and so on and so on. All the while, my lovely lady of the last almost ve years now, Tosha Doxsey, has been right there supporting and helping in any way she can. 

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