Simon VinkenoogDuring the opening ceremony of the Hemp Gallery dutch Poet Laureate Simon Vinkenoog ( July 18, 1928 – July 12, 2009) accepted the Cannabis Culture Award 2008 from Ben Dronkers.  Many of his poems mention the cannabis plant and he was a lifelong advocate of cannabis legalization. His impassioned readings and performances stirred and inspired his audiences wherever he appeared. He was a contemporary of Allen Ginsburg and William Burroughs, with whom he performed at the International Poetry Incarnation at London’s Royal Albert Hall in front of 7000 people on June 11th, 1965.

The Hash Marihuana & Hemp Museum Amsterdam confers the Cannabis Culture Awards to those who have distinguished themselves in the struggle for acceptance of Cannabis in all of its forms, working to ensure that this extraordinary plant has a future where it is fully utilized and a history that is fully known.