MISSOULA, Mont. -

Marijuana activists are hoping to take advantage of the date to collect signatures for a new petition that would end criminal penalties for marijuana in Montana.

April 20, otherwise known as four-twenty, is known as a pot-smoker's holiday.

Several Missoula businesses are throwing cannabis themed parties, and marijuana advocate Emmett Reistroffer says it's the perfect time to gather support for a ballot petition that would de-criminalize marijuana.

"April 20 is a symbolic for a lot of people in the cannabis community. It's a time for a lot of them to come together,? says Reistroffer. ?We are planning to go to celebrations tonight at different bars and restaurants around down town, and we'll be collecting signatures."

Reistroffer is the state-wide coordinator for Montana First, a ballot issue committee that supports petition CI-110. If it?s made a ballot item and is passed, CI-110 would add two lines to the Montana state constitution that would make it legal to purchase, consume, produce, and possess marijuana.

"Marijuana's here to stay,? said Reistroffer. ?For as long as prohibition has lasted, it's done nothing to get rid of marijuana, so 2012 is the time for a new approach. We can regulate it, we can have oversight, and we have nothing to hide. Responsible adults should not be punished for marijuana."

Reistroffer says his organization hopes to collect 49,000 signatures to get the measure on the November ballot. For more information about Montana First, clicking here.