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Big Changes Come To Oregon's Cannabis Industry This Year

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Big Changes Come To Oregon's Cannabis Industry This Year

by Bryan M. Vance OPB

Jan. 21, 2016


A worker examines a bud of the hybrid Gorilla Glue #4 strain at Little Amsterdam in Southwest Portland.

John Rosman/OPB

Oregon’s recreational marijuana industry hit a milestone this month.

About 90 days into the legal sale of recreational marijuana, Jan. 4 marked the first time people could officially apply for licenses to operate recreational businesses in Oregon. And more changes are on the way.

By the end of the year, Oregon’s cannabis industry will look a lot different from what we currently have.

When will new recreational retail marijuana stores be open?

Although the state is accepting business license applications, the Oregon Liquor Control Commission — which will oversee the state’s recreational marijuana business solely starting in January 2017 — doesn’t plan to approve any of the retail store applications until at least the fourth quarter of 2016.


10 Things To Know About Recreational Marijuana Sales

“Around October is what we’re projecting,” said OLCC spokesperson Mark Pettinger. Pettinger said the OLCC’s priority right now is licensing outdoor marijuana growers.

“The idea right now is to focus on the outdoor grow applicants because they’ll need to get the crops in the ground soon. As opposed to indoor grow operations, which are going to have multiple cycles to grow throughout the year,” he said.

No doubt the regulators in Oregon learned from the roll-out of recreational cannabis in Washington, which was hamstrung by short supply in the early months.

After getting the growers licensed, Oregon plans to license laboratories, processors, wholesalers, and — lastly — retailers.

Until retail marijuana stores do open, licensed medical marijuana stores in Oregon can continue to sell recreational marijuana products — but only until Dec. 31. On Jan. 1, 2017, medical stores will no longer be able to conduct recreational sales.

Can recreational stores now sell edibles, oils, etc.?

Technically, yes.

Recreational stores will be able to sell the same types of products currently sold at medical marijuana dispensaries when the former begin opening later this year.


The Oregon Liquor Control Commission is still working on its regulations for cannabis edibles and concentrates, so until the regulations are approved those products are available only to medical marijuana customers.

Bryan M. Vance/OPB

One key difference in the medical and recreational system, however, is that recreational stores won’t have products at the same dosage levels. Medical marijuana dispensaries can provide higher potency products to patients because of their medicinal needs.

And even though the recreational stores can technically sell products like edibles, creating labeling standards could delay those products from Oregon’s retail shelves until sometime in 2017.

The OLCC is still working on those standards, in conjunction with the Oregon Health Authority, which will determine dosage levels for different marijuana products.

Will medical marijuana dispensaries still be allowed to conduct recreational use sales?

Yes, for now. The Oregon Health Authority is overseeing the state’s early adoption of recreational marijuana sales, allowing medical dispensaries to conduct sales through Dec. 31. At that point, however, medical dispensaries will no longer be able to conduct recreational sales.

Can a medical marijuana license holder also hold a license for recreational marijuana growing, production or sales?

With the OLCC taking complete control of recreational cannabis regulation Jan. 1 this year, it’s likely going to force many consumers to visit new shops.

That said, you may still be able to shop for your recreational marijuana from the same company that ran the dispensary you were buying from, so long as the recreational and medical stores operate completely separate from one another.


Cannabis clones sit on display at Amazon Organics, a pot dispensary in Eugene, Ore., on Monday, Sept. 28, 2015. Medical marijuana dispensaries in Oregon will be able to sell recreational marijuana through Dec. 31, 2016.

Ryan Kang/AP

“You can’t have a one-size-fits-all in the sense that you’ve got one place that’s serving medical and is serving recreationally,” Pettinger said. “It has to be one or the other.”

Basically, business need two different store fronts for two different products. Things are slightly different for growers.

There are two ways a medical marijuana grower can produce for the recreational market. One way would be to simply surrender the medical growing license and apply for a recreational license. Alternatively, if a medical growing operation can get permission from the cardholders it serves, it could sell excess product to the recreational marijuana industry.

“The requirement, though, is that they be a part of that cannabis tracking system. So right now, the medical marijuana market does not have that requirement and that’s not a requirement from the OHA,” Pettinger said.

What else changed about Oregon’s recreational marijuana sales on Jan. 4?

The tax holiday is over. That’s the only thing that actually changed for consumers on Jan. 4. The rest of the changes won’t start to impact consumers until later this year. Since recreational marijuana sales became legal in Oregon on Oct. 1, 2015, they’ve been tax free.

I have to pay a sales tax? How much?

Yep, even though Oregon doesn’t have a general sales tax, it does impose a 25 percent sales tax on recreational marijuana sales at medical dispensaries as of Jan. 4.

“Dispensaries can set whatever price they choose for their products, but the price must be set up front and the law requires consumers be issued a receipt showing the price and tax they’re paying,” said John Galvin, manager of the Marijuana Tax Program.

The first weeks of that tax haven’t been entirely smooth.

As the Oregon Department of Revenue has noted, medical dispensaries must register a tax with the department before remitting payments or filing returns. As of early January, less than half of the 284 medical dispensaries selling recreational products have registered.


Although a wide variety of extracts, concentrates and edibles are sold at medical dispensaries such as Little Amsterdam in Southwest Portland, most edibles are not yet available to recreational customers under Oregon law.

John Rosman/OPB

The 25 percent tax isn’t permanent, however. When OLCC-licensed recreational marijuana stores begin to open later this year, they’ll drop the charge to a 17 percent state sales tax, with local municipalities able to tack on up to an additional 3 percent — bringing the maximum to 20 percent.

Comparatively, retail consumers pay a 37 percent sales tax on recreational marijuana purchases in Washington state. In Colorado, recreational marijuana purchases are subjected to a 10 percent state marijuana tax on top of the 2.9 percent state sales tax. Local municipalities can also add on sales taxes in Colorado.

What’s Oregon doing with all that tax money?

Initially, the tax revenue collected from retail sales will go to cover the Oregon Department of Revenue’s costs to collect the new tax. Then some of it will go to pay for OLCC’s costs associated with launching the recreational marijuana program.

But once those payoffs are complete, the Oregon Department of Revenue says the sales tax revenue will be dispersed in the following way:

•40 percent will go to Oregon’s Common School Fund

•20 percent will go to Oregon’s Mental Health Alcoholism and Drug Services Account

•15 percent will go to Oregon State Police

•10 percent will go to participating cities’ law enforcement offices

•10 percent will go to participating counties’ law enforcement offices

•5 percent will go to the Oregon Health Authority for alcohol and drug abuse prevention, early intervention and treatment services

How will the OLCC make sure the marijuana doesn’t wind up in the hands of criminals?

A concern for some recreational marijuana opponents has been how the state will keep criminals from profiting from legalization.

To help prevent marijuana or marijuana profits from falling into the wrong hands, the OLCC will require all recreational marijuana plants and products to be tracked from seed-to-sale using a cannabis tracking system.

Basically, when plants are immature clones, they’re associated with an RFID tag that will stick with that plant through the entire process.

“Let’s say the product from one plant is then turned into an extract, which is then turned into an edible, which then becomes a cannabis chocolate bar, which then gets packaged into a lot of 10 bars in a case, which gets shipped to two or three different stores,” Pettinger said. “That product is tracked at every step along the way.”

Another benefit of the tracking system is it allows the industry to easily know where products came from if a recall occurs.

What if my city/county is dry?

Although the state did legalize the use and sale of recreational marijuana, it gave local communities the opportunity to ban sales and production. So far, 89 cities and counties have opted to prohibit either the production, processing, wholesaling or retail sales of recreational marijuana. Some communities will have a chance to challenge those decisions on the ballot. That said, if your city or county does opt to prohibit recreational marijuana, it won’t get a share of tax revenue.

For some perspective on the potential returns, Washington state brought in more than $67 million in tax revenue from recreational marijuana in its first year of operation. Comparatively, Colorado brought in almost $70 million in revenue from marijuana taxes during the first fiscal year of legalization, according to TIME.

For more information about Oregon’s recreational marijuana industry, check out the state’s recreational marijuana FAQs.


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Wary Oregon wants weaker pot edibles for recreational users

Noelle Crombie | The Oregonian/OregonLive

on January 23, 2016


The market for marijuana-infused edibles in Colorado includes everything from candies and sweets to drinks and even granola and nut bars as featured in this file photo. Oregon's proposed rules would mean pot-infused candies, chocolates and other treats and snack foods sold to people 21 and older would be half as potent as what's allowed in Colorado and Washington, states that have served as national laboratories of sorts for legal cannabis markets.

Kristyna Wentz-Graff/The Oregonian


A baker at a Colorado company churns out marijuana-infused cookies in this file photo.

Kristyna Wentz-Graff/The Oregonian


The market for marijuana-infused edibles in Colorado includes everything from candies and sweets to drinks and even granola and nut bars as featured in this file photo.

Kristyna Wentz-Graff/The Oregonian

When it comes to marijuana-infused edibles, Oregon wants you to know that, like perfume, a little goes a long way.

Snacks and treats made with cannabis are not only tasty but potent. Oregon regulators have come up with rules that would make these products half as strong as what Colorado and Washington allow in part to protect novices, including those whose most recent experience with the drug dates to the Nixon administration.

Oregon and Alaska are part of a second generation of states with legal marijuana markets that see Colorado and Washington not as models but as a cautionary tales about the appeal and pitfalls of cannabis-infused drinks, sweets and foods. In Colorado, home to a robust edibles market, some rookie consumers had high-profile and, in at least one case, tragic experiences after consuming food made with cannabis. Overall, marijuana-related calls to poison centers increased after legalization in both states.

(See related: Legalizing marijuana: What Oregon can learn from Colorado about regulating edible pot)

So Oregon has proposed setting its sights lower, hoping weaker marijuana products would ultimately protect two groups: inexperienced consumers who eat too much too quickly only to feel sick and impaired, and preschoolers who end up high, disoriented and, in some cases, hospitalized after snacking on their parents' pot-infused treats.

"We wrestled with this for quite a bit, trying to figure out what the right answer is," said Michael Tynan, a policy officer with the Oregon Health Authority, speaking at a meeting of the agency's rules advisory committee on marijuana earlier this month. "We are not an economic agency. We are the public health division. The Legislature gave us the responsibility to protect public health.

"That is the goal and the lens that my bosses and my colleagues are going to apply to this." he said.

But advocates for the marijuana industry said Oregon's proposal is an overreaction that threatens the livelihoods of chocolatiers, bakers, ice cream makers, drink producers and others who infuse their products with cannabis. Customers, they argue, aren't going to be as interested in buying weaker treats or stocking up on chocolates to get high.

Keeping young kids from these products is a priority, say marijuana industry advocates, but limiting their potency does little to address that.

"I mean, a lot of this is really just proper parenting," said John Bayes, a longtime grower and owner of

Bad experiences with edibles like the one Maureen Dowd documented in a now-famous 2014 New York Times column were a factor in Alaska's decision to open its recreational market this spring with lower serving sizes, said Jay Butler, the state's chief medical officer.

"From the retailers' perspective, they don't really want potential new customers going 'Maureen Dowd' on them," said Butler. "The more pleasant the experience, the better."

Though Washington's serving sizes mirror Colorado's, the state has taken a harder line on the types of products it allows.

Perishable treats such as ice cream and cooking staples such as butter are off limits. The state has proposed prohibiting foods that have to be baked or cooked at home, like pancake mixes or cookie dough.

The fear, said Kristi Weeks, policy counsel with the Washington Department of Health, is that consumers would "go home and make a 100 milligram pancake and have a bad experience."

A three-person team at the Washington Liquor and Cannabis Board screens each infused edible product before it's allowed on the market, weeding out anything "especially" attractive to kids, said Weeks. Oregon does not limit the kinds of edible products that can be sold to recreational consumers, only how they are packaged and labeled.

Among the rejects in Washington: microwave popcorn, cotton candy, hot cocoa and a product called "pot ramen."

"You have to laugh at that one because who eats Top Ramen?" Weeks said. "College kids. And they are 18, 19 and 20."

Worries about kids getting into potent products drove Washington to also limit products intended for medical marijuana patients.

Starting in July, the state will allow medical marijuana patients who meet certain conditions to purchase what the Washington calls "high THC" products, such as skin patches, capsules, tinctures and suppositories.

Weeks said the limited line of potent products doesn't include candies and other treats and instead resembles "more traditional forms of medicine that a child wouldn't be likely to find and consume."

"Most kids are taught that pills are medicine," she said. "They look like medicine as opposed to a cookie."

In Oregon, state health officials expect to finalize rules for serving sizes by summer.

Meanwhile, makers of these products worry the proposed limits will turn off consumers looking for alternatives to smoking and dabbing the drug.

Some consumers will be happy with a couple of milligrams of THC, while others may want as much as 25 milligrams, said Daniel Stoops, whose Portland company Danodan Grassworks makes marijuana-infused caramels using organic ingredients.

"A mother of two who comes home to a couple kids and has to make dinner and wants to relax a little bit might need 25 milligrams," he said. "That might be her jam."

Under Oregon's proposal, that mother would get two servings in a package, while someone content with 5 milligrams will get 10. If the state moves ahead with the proposal, Stoops said he'll end up putting 10 5-milligram caramels in a package and selling them for between $15 and $30.

"It's a real penalty," he said, "to someone who has a higher tolerance and needs a few more milligrams."


503-276-7184; @noellecrombie">http://greenbodhi.org]Green Bodhi, a medical cannabis business in Eugene and Portland.

Practically speaking, Oregon's limits would work like this: A chocolate bar sold on the recreational market would be made up of 5 milligram servings, each marked on the bar itself so the consumer could easily identify a single portion. The whole bar could have no more than 50 milligrams of THC – enough for 10 servings.

Products where individual servings can't easily be marked, say a drink or container of ice cream, would be limited to a total of two servings, or 10 milligrams.

The proposed limits are half of what's allowed in Washington and Colorado, the first states to legalize marijuana for recreational use. Both limit a single serving to 10 milligrams and whole packages to 100 milligrams.

The health authority would allow higher limits for products intended for the medical marijuana market, where patients in general tend to consume more cannabis and use more potent products. These products would be sold only to medical marijuana patients and their caregivers.

For states with legal marijuana markets, pot-infused edibles pose a challenge. There's little science to suggest what constitutes a single serving, leaving regulators to guess at a starting point for consumers.

What's more, cannabis-infused foods tend to have natural kid-appeal. They come in the form of tasty snacks and confections, like chocolates, jelly beans, candies and baked goods, and tend to look no different from ordinary treats.

Oregon, like Washington and Colorado, prohibits labeling that appeals to kids and requires that marijuana be sold in child-resistant containers. Packaging, for instance, can't feature cartoons or super heroes. Oregon public health officials plan to require a "universal symbol," a marijuana leaf next to an exclamation mark, to signal a product contains cannabis.

Advocates of lower serving sizes say those requirements are essential, but don't go far enough to protect kids, who may look past warning labels and get into a container of cannabis-infused sweets.

"You are putting a recreational drug, a euphoric drug, into a form that is uniquely attractive to children," said Dr. Robert Hendrickson, associate medical director of the Oregon Poison Center, which last year received 25 calls related to children under 6 consuming marijuana, up from 11 the previous year. (By comparison, the center received an estimated 1,800 calls in 2014 about young children getting into household cleaners, according to data provided by the agency.)

Though they look familiar, these products can pack a wallop.

Plus, they take longer to have an effect. An adult disappointed that a bite of chocolate fails to make them high may eat more – and maybe even more – instead of waiting a couple of hours. Eating too much too quickly, as some Colorado consumers learned early on, can be miserable.

The Rocky Mountain Poison Center received 84 calls from Colorado last year related to people of all ages consuming pot-infused edibles – representing roughly one-third of all marijuana calls to the agency last year, according to data the regional center provided to The Oregonian/OregonLive.

The number of calls the center received about young children ingesting marijuana-infused edibles spiked from 5 in 2013 to 22 last year.

At Children's Hospital Colorado, 14 kids under 10 were treated for marijuana ingestion in 2014, the first year of regulated recreational marijuana sales. The number was an increase from previous years, hospital data shows. Data for 2015 is not yet available.

About half the children who come to the hospital for treatment of marijuana-related symptoms end up admitted for observation, said Dr. Sam Wang, a pediatric toxicologist and emergency medicine physician at Children's Hospital Colorado.

In younger children, marijuana ingestion typically involves edibles, Wang said.

While adults are cautioned to take it easy with pot-infused edibles, young kids aren't likely to show such restraint, said Wang.

"From a child's standpoint," he said, "if they have it and no one catches them, they aren't going to stop with just one."

In Colorado, edibles' popularity took state regulators by surprise. According to an analysis of Colorado data by Marijuana Policy Group, a Denver-based economic and policy consulting firm, edibles accounted for an estimated one-third of recreational marijuana sales last year.

A handful of high-profile experiences with edibles, including the case of a young man who ate a marijuana-infused cookie and later fell to his death off a Denver hotel balcony, prompted officials to establish new rules intended to ensure that products are marked and packaged so that consumers can easily identify a single serving.

Products that can't be easily marked, such as granola, are limited to 10 milligrams.

"You need to be able to intuitively tell what the dose size is," said Mike Van Dyke, branch chief for environmental epidemiology and toxicology at the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. "We had some issues around that early on in Colorado where you could have a product that contained a total of 100 milligrams and it was a cookie and the serving size was a 10th of that cookie. That was not very intuitive."

Van Dyke called Oregon's proposal to set the limit at 5 milligrams for a single serving and 50 for a package "a reasonable recommendation."

"I think for a recreational market setting the limit at 5 (milligrams) is going to be helpful for those novice users, people who haven't used before, which is presumably a good portion of the market," he said.

Even with Colorado's official serving size of 10 milligrams, the advice to consumers from the state and from the marijuana industry itself is to start out even lower. Informational cards at Colorado marijuana shops advise consumers: "Start low. Go slow."

Bad experiences with edibles like the one Maureen Dowd documented in a now-famous 2014 New York Times column were a factor in Alaska's decision to open its recreational market this spring with lower serving sizes, said Jay Butler, the state's chief medical officer.

"From the retailers' perspective, they don't really want potential new customers going 'Maureen Dowd' on them," said Butler. "The more pleasant the experience, the better."

Though Washington's serving sizes mirror Colorado's, the state has taken a harder line on the types of products it allows.

Perishable treats such as ice cream and cooking staples such as butter are off limits. The state has proposed prohibiting foods that have to be baked or cooked at home, like pancake mixes or cookie dough.

The fear, said Kristi Weeks, policy counsel with the Washington Department of Health, is that consumers would "go home and make a 100 milligram pancake and have a bad experience."

A three-person team at the Washington Liquor and Cannabis Board screens each infused edible product before it's allowed on the market, weeding out anything "especially" attractive to kids, said Weeks. Oregon does not limit the kinds of edible products that can be sold to recreational consumers, only how they are packaged and labeled.

Among the rejects in Washington: microwave popcorn, cotton candy, hot cocoa and a product called "pot ramen."

"You have to laugh at that one because who eats Top Ramen?" Weeks said. "College kids. And they are 18, 19 and 20."

Worries about kids getting into potent products drove Washington to also limit products intended for medical marijuana patients.

Starting in July, the state will allow medical marijuana patients who meet certain conditions to purchase what the Washington calls "high THC" products, such as skin patches, capsules, tinctures and suppositories.

Weeks said the limited line of potent products doesn't include candies and other treats and instead resembles "more traditional forms of medicine that a child wouldn't be likely to find and consume."

"Most kids are taught that pills are medicine," she said. "They look like medicine as opposed to a cookie."

In Oregon, state health officials expect to finalize rules for serving sizes by summer.

Meanwhile, makers of these products worry the proposed limits will turn off consumers looking for alternatives to smoking and dabbing the drug.

Some consumers will be happy with a couple of milligrams of THC, while others may want as much as 25 milligrams, said Daniel Stoops, whose Portland company Danodan Grassworks makes marijuana-infused caramels using organic ingredients.

"A mother of two who comes home to a couple kids and has to make dinner and wants to relax a little bit might need 25 milligrams," he said. "That might be her jam."

Under Oregon's proposal, that mother would get two servings in a package, while someone content with 5 milligrams will get 10. If the state moves ahead with the proposal, Stoops said he'll end up putting 10 5-milligram caramels in a package and selling them for between $15 and $30.

"It's a real penalty," he said, "to someone who has a higher tolerance and needs a few more milligrams."


503-276-7184; @noellecrombie[/url]

Edited by notsofasteddie
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Oregon Begins Recreational Marijuana Sales on Saturday

Retailers may use generic packaging and labeling until their new ones are approved

By Ben DiPietro

Sept. 30, 2016


Recreational marijuana stores can open for business in Oregon on Saturday. The state already allowed medical use of the drug. Here, Shane Cavanaugh, owner of Amazon Organics, a pot dispensary in Eugene, Ore., arranges the cannabis display in his store in September 2015.

Photo: Ryan Kang/Associated Press

The two agencies that regulate Oregon’s marijuana industry approved rules to allow retailers to keep products on their store shelves that don’t meet new testing, packaging and labeling standards that take effect Saturday, the first day recreational marijuana stores can open for business.

Products that didn’t meet the new standards could have been removed from stores, but the Oregon Liquor Control Commission and the Oregon Health Authority agreed that if licensees don’t yet have preapproved packaging and labels, they may use generic packaging and labeling until their packages and labels are approved by the OLCC.

There are 26 recreational marijuana retailers licensed by the state, and some could be open for business as early as Saturday, said Steve Marks, executive director of the OLCC. “We’re right on time. It’s Oct. 1 and we’re ready,” he said.

Retailers had complained of a backlog in getting approvals for labels and packages and said there were only a few laboratories capable of testing to the new, more stringent standards. Mr. Marks said in a conference call with reporters on Friday that the state is caught up with testing, and that four of the 10 laboratories presently licensed by the state are capable of conducting pesticide testing as required under the updated rules. More labs will be accredited in the coming weeks, he said.

To remain on shelves, products produced before Oct. 1 must clearly state they were tested under the old regime and must leave stores in childproof packaging.

By allowing retailers to sell products produced before the Oct. 1 rules changes, the state will provide a smooth transition for retailers to sell existing product and for those medical dispensaries that want to transition into a recreational license, said Nathan Rix, a senior policy analyst at the commission. To date, the OLCC has approved a total of 326 licenses in the following categories: producers, processors, wholesalers, retailers and labs.

While recreational retails sales officially begin Saturday, medical marijuana stores had received waivers to sell recreational products temporarily until retailers could be licensed. Oregon voters approved medical marijuana in 1998 and recreational marijuana in 2014.

The OLCC also passed a temporary rule to give it more control over the names of various marijuana product strains to make sure they are not aimed at minors by referring to toys, movies, cartoons. The commission cited as examples products with names such as “Girl Scout Cookies”; “Candy Land,” a well-known children’s board game; “Smurfette,” a cartoon character; and “Skywalker” and “Jedi Kush,” references to characters from the “Star Wars” movies.

“It’s a move to regulate words,” Mr. Marks said. Of about 500 strain names already reviewed, fewer than 20 strain names appear to be affected.

As for testing, the commission will permit a smaller number of batches in each harvest lot to be tested, even though the new rules mandate testing for all batches in a lot. As testing capacity grows at existing licensed labs and those still awaiting a license, the state expects to gradually increase testing.

To protect medical users of marijuana, OHA is prioritizing testing for those products. The agency is responsible for developing and implementing testing rules for both medical and recreational marijuana.


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Oregon recreational marijuana sales top $160 million for first nine months of 2016

Submitted by Marijuana News

Thu, 10/20/2016


Marijuana dispensaries in Oregon sold more than $160 million worth of recreational marijuana products in the first nine months of the year, sales tax figures released Monday by the state Department of Revenue show.

The agency received $40.2 million in recreational marijuana sales tax payments from dispensaries between the start of January and the end of September, suggesting that about $160.8 million worth of recreational pot products were sold in Oregon. State-regulated medical marijuana dispensaries selling recreational marijuana charge a 25 percent sales tax to customers for all flower, edible and other marijuana items.

“We don’t have those ready yet,” Department of Revenue spokeswoman Joy Krawczyk said.Department of Revenue officials still are waiting for some dispensaries to respond with quarterly tax returns from earlier in the year. Without the returns, the agency does not have details about which recreational marijuana products sold the most and produced the most sales tax money.

This month, the Oregon Liquor Control Commission licensed the first retailers in its recreational marijuana program. The retailers charge a 17 percent state sales tax for all recreational marijuana products.

The OLCC, as of Monday, listed three licensed recreational marijuana retailers in Lane County. Two of the retailers are in Eugene — Emerald City Medicinal at 1474 West 6th Ave. and Hwy 99 Cannabis Co. at 1083 B Highway 99N — and one, Apothecaria, is in Cottage Grove.

Medical marijuana dispensaries, which the Oregon Health Authority oversees, must become licensed retailers with the OLCC if they want to continue to sell recreational pot after the start of 2017. Until the end of this year, any dispensaries that have not become recreational retailers will continue to collect a 25 percent sales tax.

Medical marijuana dispensaries that opt not to sell recreational pot can continue to provide medical pot to patients.In Eugene, 26 medical marijuana dispensaries also sell recreational pot, according to the Health Authority.



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Can Oregon become the cannabis capital of the world?

Written by Kim Moore

October 25, 2016


One year after the legalization of recreational marijuana, Oregon’s pot industry is booming with more than $400 million in projected sales in 2016.

But like any new industry, pot entrepreneurs are faced with the challenge of building a strong brand and developing new products to attract underserved customers.

The industry has to work fast to establish itself as a leading manufacturer and retailer of marijuana products because cannabis will probably be legal in the United States in a few decades, predicted Renee Spears, creator of Smuggle, a cannabis products retailer.

“We have a slim window to brand Oregon as the cannabis capital of the world,” said Spears, who spoke as a panelist at an Oregon Business Hot Topics Cool Talks breakfast event on Tuesday. “This is Oregon’s moment.”

One advantage Oregon marijuana growers have over other jurisdictions is access to the plant’s diverse genomes, said Jeremy Plumb, founder of Newcleus Nurseries, a commercial cannabis cultivator. The diverse strains of the cannabis plant that are cultivated here make it possible for Oregon retailers to sell a variety of cannabis products.

“We are sitting on a treasure trove,” said Plumb. “There is no limit to the products and categories.”


In some ways the state’s pot industry mirrors the emergence of Oregon’s craft brewers, which have evolved as leading creators of artisanal, unique-tasting beers. But Plumb sees the potential for cannabis to also be branded as a wellness product because of its use in pain management.

“People are comparing (the cannabis) sector to beer and wine,” said Plumb. “But it has a social, therapeutic outcome.”

The state’s pot sector also has the potential to bridge the state’s urban-rural economic divide.

Agricultural companies, in particular, stand to benefit from the growth of the cannabis industry by employing sophisticated growing techniques to help cultivate the plant. Cannabis production is known for its intense energy and water use, making it an ideal sector for more efficient farming methods.

As the cannabis industry matures, it will be increasingly important for businesses to build their brand to distinguish themselves from the competition, said Spears. Her company, Smuggle, specifically targets women and baby boomers, which she says is an underrepresented market.

“If you want to stand out, you need to build a brand right now,” said Spears.

Claire Kaufmann, northwest regional director of BDS Analytics, a cannabis industry research firm, said she does not see a lot of smart branding of cannabis products.

“When it comes to branding, sometimes (companies) can get ahead of themselves. Brand expression needs to resonate with customers,” she said.

As the pot industry grows it is inevitable that big businesses will move in and aggressively compete with the state’s craft growers and merchandisers.

Scotts Miracle Gro, the maker of garden maintenance products, is one multi-national corporation that has entered the pot market nationally by selling fertilizers and soils to cannabis growers, as well as lighting and hydroponics equipment.

Kauffman predicts large businesses will make a big move into edibles and cannabis concentrates in particular.


A lot big money is already considering investment in the state’s pot business, said Vince Silwoski, an attorney at Harris Moure.

He does not see big money directed at the pot growers market yet.

Silwoski expects pot companies’ access to traditional banking services will expand as more states legalize recreational marijuana use. Marijuana businesses have to deal in cash because most banks deny credit card processing.

“We are close to a tipping point,” said Silwoski. “We will see the banking thing change in the next couple of years.”

Check out this clip from panelist Claire Kaufmann below.


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Oregon cities setting rules after opting in to legal pot

By Andrew Selsky

The Associated Press

Updated November 18, 2016


FILE–In this Sept. 27, 2016 file photo, different strains of marijuana are displayed in West Salem Cannabis, a marijuana shop in Salem, Ore.

(AP Photo/Andrew Selsky, file)

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Some 30 counties and cities in Oregon approved some type of marijuana businesses in last week’s election, and officials in those communities now must establish rules for every step in the production and supply chain.

When voters legalized recreational marijuana statewide two years ago, the communities — from the cowboy town of Pendleton to Sweet Home in the Willamette Valley — opted out. But many switched it up this month, voting to allow at least some form of the pot industry, including medical marijuana.

“No one has done this in Oregon since liquor Prohibition,” said Scott Winkels, a lobbyist with the League of Oregon Cities. “This is the first time we’ve had to step in and develop and regulate a marketplace for a controlled substance since 1933.”

Local officials must determine operating hours for marijuana retailers, growing farms and processors. They also were trying to figure out whether the businesses should be allowed near parks and what sort of security and odor controls the businesses must provide.


FILE–In this Sept. 30, 2016, file photo, a marijuana harvester examines buds as they go through a trimming machine in a rural area near Corvallis, Ore.

(AP Photo/Andrew Selsky, file)

The rule-setting also was happening in other states that have legalized recreational marijuana.

In California, which approved pot last week, the San Jose City Council imposed a temporary ban — including on outdoor gardens — to give officials time to develop regulations for sales and farming.

In Colorado, where voters passed marijuana in 2012, the rules were still being tweaked.

This month, Denver became the first U.S. city to allow people to use marijuana in bars and restaurants, though state licensing officials announced a rule Friday that prohibits businesses with liquor licenses from allowing pot consumption on their premises. The move strikes a major blow to the voter-passed initiative.

In Oregon, the Liquor Control Commission didn’t begin finalizing regulations and licensing businesses until this year. The communities that approved marijuana businesses on Election Day are now starting to look at regulations.

“Most have been borrowing from each other,” said Rob Bovett, legal counsel of Association of Oregon Counties, describing efforts to establish ordinances.

Opt-in ballot measures go into effect in January, Bovett said. If the jurisdictions want to reap the tax benefits at the earliest opportunity, they should have the regulations finalized before then so marijuana companies can seek licenses and start doing business, liquor commission spokesman Mark Pettinger said.

The League of Oregon Cities has drawn up a guide to help struggling local officials.

It says cities may impose restrictions on the hours of operation and the locations of producers, processors, wholesalers, as well as retailers and medical marijuana grow sites, processing sites and dispensaries. They may also regulate public access and how the businesses operate.

“Probably most cities will use (the guide) as a template,” Winkels said. “The easiest way is to cut and paste the ordinance in … though some will probably be making local adjustments.”

Robert Snyder, lawyer for the town of Sweet Home, said forming the rules is “going to take work” and that it will be up to the city council to decide whether to get public input.

One marijuana ballot measure that passed last week imposed a 3 percent local sales tax on marijuana products, on top of a 17 percent state sales tax, Bovett said.

Even counties and cities that decided to prohibit marijuana businesses hedged their bets by approving the additional tax so they can be prepared to impose it if voters eventually say yes to pot.

“All (of Oregon’s) 111 cities and counties voted yes on the local tax,” Bovett said.


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Weed Week Descends on Portland Next Week!


November 20, 2016



PDX Weed Week presented by TJs Gardens is five incredible days of cannabis activities and events in Portland, Nov. 30 to Dec. 4. Weed Week is a grassroots movement bringing together the cannabis community to share information, insights, and ideas through education, events, and entertainment.

Weed Week kicks-off with the Weedmaps Cannabis Crawl. The idea is simple: groups of Portland Weed Week attendees will go from cannabis-business to cannabis-business in the downtown vicinity to learn more about them. It’s different, it’s dynamic, and for people who don’t have the opportunity to get out and see the cannabis community in Portland, it’s absolutely something special.

For people who value learning and education, Weed Week offers two full days of talks and workshops. Attendees will choose from more than 30 seminars covering four different tracks – business & technology, breeding & growing, health & wellness, and a hobbiest track. The lecture series is Thursday, Dec. 1 and Friday, Dec. 2 at the Leftbank Annex.

Many of the social events begin on the weekend, including the Taste of Terps Festival on Saturday, Dec. 3, and the Cannabis Classic exhibitor’s fair and awards show on Sunday, Dec. 4. The Taste of Terps Festival is for consumers looking to sample different types of products. There are two sessions, and Weed Week attendees must RSVP through the Weed Week app.

The Cannabis Classic exhibitor’s fair is on Sunday, Dec. 4, and features PitchFest, which is an opportunity for people with a cannabis business idea to pitch the ladies of The Marijuana Show for a chance to earn $50,000 of seed capital. In addition, businesses will be in attendance vending, demonstrating, and showcasing their products and services. The final act of Weed Week comes in the form of the Cannabis Classic awards show, where awards and cash prizes will be bestowed upon Oregon’s top producers and growers.

PDX Weed Week presented by TJs Gardens is a dynamic event aimed at bringing the cannabis community together to make things happen. If you are interested in attending PDX Weed Week presented by TJs Gardens, please visit www.pdxweedweek.com, where you can see the entire schedule of events as well as purchase all-access passes.


Contact: Cory Wray

Tel: 619-380-0055

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.pdxweedweek.com


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Best Buds – Episode 2 – Life in Bend, Oregon a Year After Marijuana Legalization

Published on Dec 13, 2016

In the second installment of Best Buds, Chris and Brian follow the marijuana legalization trail as they head west to experience the best things to do in Oregon while high. They kick off their adventure at Bend, Oregon dispensary Oregrown, where they stock up on plenty of high-quality recreational cannabis for their adventures. After that, they meet up with Madison Louch and her friend Devin to take a leisurely float on the Deschutes river, pedal down the street on a Cycle Pub, and get high (up in the air) in a giant hot air balloon.

About the series:

BFFs Chris Nester and Brian Sturgill are just two dudes exercising their rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of cannabis. Join them as they travel the country in search of the best things to do while high.

Want to embark on your own cannabis adventure? Get inspired at https://www.leafly.com/.

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Need pot, but can't leave the house? Marijuana delivery services are coming to Portland.


A committee of 15 people will advise the Oregon Liquor Control Commission on rules for regulating marijuana.

Noelle Crombie | The Oregonian/OregonLive

By Jessica Floum | The Oregonian/OregonLive

December 21, 2016

Portland on Wednesday blessed "marijuana couriers" and other pot-related "micro" business types in a move to ease financial barriers for entrepreneurs.

The council voted unanimously to immediately adopt the additions and other changes to the city's marijuana code.

"Since the state regulations keep changing and the industry keep flourishing, we'll be coming back with multiple changes I'm sure," Commissioner Amanda Fritz said. "I look forward to that time."

Courier businesses can now produce marijuana and other cannabis products but they can sell it only through delivery.

Like other marijuana businesses, couriers need a licensed headquarters within a permitted building in an area where it's allowed by city zoning rules. All marijuana retailers licensed with the city must first obtain a license from the Oregon Liquor Control Commission.

Couriers cannot sell pot from storefronts. But they can open their licensed headquarters near other marijuana businesses. Traditional retailers and dispensaries must keep their shops at least 1,000 feet apart.

Current pot businesses licensed by the city and the Oregon Health Authority on or before July 1, 2015, and still in good standing, do not need to meet the distance requirement.

Another amendment addresses a sometimes slow and burdensome process for businesses transitioning from providing medical to recreational marijuana. It allows marijuana shops to operate without a city-issued "marijuana regulatory license" for up to five business days after the state grants them a retail license.

To get a city license, marijuana business owners must fill out a personal history form. They must also obtain an alarm permit from the Portland Police Bureau and an electrical permit for the Bureau of Development Services. They also need proof of an air filtration system.

Any violation of the city's code could result in a fine of up to $5,000. Enforcement falls to the Office of Neighborhood Involvement, currently led by Fritz.


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What Are Oregonians Smoking? 
By Allie Beckett
May 4th, 2017

The numbers are in! Oregonians bought and consumed $37 million worth of cannabis products in the month of March alone.


This year is proving to be the biggest year for cannabis in Oregon. Data from BDS Analytics‘ GreenEdge Retail Sales Tracking Data shows The Beaver State has already sold 24% more cannabis than this time last year, rounding out at $101 million worth of cannabis sales in the first quarter of 2017. Despite slowing retail sales nationwide, which fell by 0.2% in March according to the US Census Bureau, cannabis sales are growing at an accelerating rate. The sales of cannabis vape pens alone grew 441% in Oregon over the previous year.

Oregon’s medical marijuana market accounted for nearly 22% of the total $37 million sales.


So what were Oregonians spending their dough on?


No surprise here that dried bulk flower leads the way at $19.9 million, while an additional $1.9 million in pre-rolled joints were sold.


BDS Analytics’ GreenEdge Retail Sales Tracking Data


Concentrates as a whole brought in $7.7 million of revenue, with vape pens contributing to the majority of those sales at $4.9 million. Breaking it down further, $1.2 million worth of shatter, $416,000 worth of oils, $190,000 worth of live resin, and $110,000 worth of wax was sold throughout Oregon in the month of March.


Due to complications processors have faced getting established in the marketplace over the last year, I expect these numbers to increase significantly over the next few months as more concentrate products make it to retail.


While the options for marijuana-infused edibles have been limited as processors have slowly been getting licensed and settled into the market, the category still sold $4.7 million worth of products in a short period of time. Compared to February, consumers in March purchased 43% more marijuana-infused edibles. Candy led the way at $2 million with chocolates close behind at $1.5 million. The remaining subcategories accounted for $1.2 million: $754,000 of tinctures, $285,000 of infused foods, $92,000 of pills, and $92,000 worth of infused beverages.


Topicals, one of the best “first-time” cannabis products, accounted for $489,000 of the month’s total sales — possibly due to the lack of topical producers in the market.


Overall, the market is experiencing massive growth in sales of all categories but concentrates and edibles are particularly booming as more Oregon producers get established. 


As more stats emerge, we’ll keep you up-to-date and informed on the most popular and fastest growing products in Oregon’s cannabis market.


All data provided by BDS Analytics’ GreenEdge Retail Sales Tracking Data.





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Portland backs cannabis lounge bill, envisions 'craft' tourism boost


Pete Danko  Staff Reporter
May 17, 2017

The city of Portland has joined with cannabis businesses in lobbying for a bill that would allow consumption of cannabis at licensed lounges akin to tobacco smoking patios.


Part of the city’s argument for Senate Bill 307: It could help boost craft cannabis tourism.
“The same way as Oregon and our city celebrate our craft beer and wine industry, Portland welcomes and wants to provide opportunities for our emerging craft cannabis industry,” Mayor Ted Wheeler and Commissioner Chloe Eudaly, who oversees the Office of Neighborhood Involvement, the city’s cannabis regulatory body, said in testimony submitted to the Joint Committee on Marijuana Regulation this week.


“SB 307 would provide the regulatory framework for tourists to enjoy the products from Oregon’s growing craft cannabis industry legally and safely, outside the home and outside of public view,” the Portland leaders went on.


As originally introduced, SB 307 allowed for consumption at temporary events and at indoor lounges. But after the bill ran into opposition, a workgroup produced an amended version, discussed at a public hearing on Tuesday, that drops the events provision and shifts to the smoking patio concept, with at least one open wall.


Licenses would only be allowed in cities or counties that pass ordinances allowing for them.


The Portland officials, along with other supporters, also said the bill is needed for citizens who, for whatever reason, can’t smoke in their residence.


“Absent a legal, regulated, and safe place outside of the home to consume cannabis … Oregonians may find themselves consuming cannabis in public view on sidewalks, on streets, in vehicles, and in parks,” they wrote.
Various health workers and officials testified against the bill, arguing that it could expose workers to dangerous second-hand smoke and send the wrong message to children.


“Our kids are watching,” Jennifer Vines, deputy health director for Multnomah County, testified. “Our concern is that the normalization of smoking when it is allowed in public erodes the decades of work that we’ve done in public health to roll back that social norms around tobacco and smoking products.”





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Where to Get Food Late at Night in Portland


Where to get munchie meals. 

(Original Hot Cake House, Emily Joan Greene)

By WW Staff  | 
April 17


Devil's Dill
1711 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 503-236-8067, devilsdill.com. Pickup till 3 am.


Mouth dry? Stomach empty? You desperately need a giant, delicious sandwich at like 2:30 am on a Sunday? Arguably, this hoagie spot is the best meal available in this city at that hour. It'll take delivery orders until 2:30 am for a hefty five-spice pulled pork No. 1 ($9.50) or let you slide in at the bar next door and wash it down with booze.

Hammy's Pizza
2114 SE Clinton St., 503-235-1035, hammyspizza.com. Delivers till 4 am daily.

Hammy's is the cure for every munchie—a 4 am delivery pizza that will put your obsessive rumination to use on slow-proofed, thick and tangy crust, fresh meat and daily-made sauce.


Javier's Taco Shop
121 N Lombard St., 503-286-3186. Open 24 hours.


Do not go to Javier's sober for burritos. Do not go un-high for a chimichanga. You won't appreciate it. Ride here stoned in a Lyft at 4:30 am, and feel weird in front of police officers and EMTs who are always here with you, eating meat with…many textures.

(The Roxy, Christopher Onstott)


The Roxy
1121 SW Stark St., 503-223-9160, theroxydiner.com. Open 24 hours, but it don't like Mondays.


The Roxy is the only thing in Portland seemingly immune to the ravages of time, with DayGlo-yellow gravy, omelets thick as thighs and tables full of teens conceived on Molly who also take Molly. Long may it ruin the digestion of the drunk and high.

(Original Hot Cake House, Emily Joan Greene)


Original Hotcake House
1002 SE Powell Blvd., 503-236-7402, hotcakehouse.com. Open 24 hours.


The pancakes and seasoned-griddle omelettes at the all-night Hotcake House don't scratch an itch—they smother it in carbs and fat and turn you into the world's happiest paperweight.

(Sizzle Pie, Joe Riedl) 

Sizzle Pie
624 E Burnside St. and elsewhere, 503-234-7437, sizzlepie.com. Till 3 am school nights, 4 am Friday-Saturday.


Vegan? High? Well, welcome to heaven. Sizzle Pie will bring you vegan things that taste and look like pizza, until 4 am on weekends, right to your door.

(Lonesome’s Pizza, Vivian Johnson) 

Lonesome's Pizza
1 SW 3rd Ave, 503-234-0114, lonesomespizza.com. Till 3 am daily.


The menu looks psychedelic and so do the owners and so do the insides of the pizza boxes, larded with art. Order the No. 26—the vingt-seize, in French—with soppressata and banana peppers. There is no other pie, and it'll come to your house til 3 am.




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Legal pot dealers find a home on Oregon's Cannabis Coast

By Salem Statesman Journal
Updated on August 6, 2017

Eddie "Weedman" Biggar, 52, dances to attract customers for CannaMedicine on May 19, 2017, in Newport, along the Oregon Coast. Just like a sign-waver might promote the local pizzeria, The Weedman boasts $5 grams, urging customers down the street to CannaMedicine.
(Anna Reed/Statesman-Journal)


Shane Ramos-Harrington, the owner of Touch of Aloha Cannabis Dispensary, helps a customer in his shop outside Depoe Bay along the Oregon Coast. Ramos-Harrington came from Oahu and opened the business, now looking to spread a little aloha to Oregon.
(Anna Reed/Statesman-Journal)


Deb Cardy, 61, stands in the home she offers up as a marijuana-friendly bed and breakfast outside Yachats along the Oregon Coast. The state has licensed pot dealers in every Oregon county bordering the Pacific Ocean, with the highest number near the beach in Lincoln County, state data show. But there's little so far to suggest marijuana is changing the coastal economy, which is already largely fueled by tourism.
(Anna Reed/Statesman-Journal)


Chammaron Baugh, 26, a budtender at Discovery Cannabis, shows marijuana buds in May in Waldport.
(Anna Reed/Statesman-Journal)


Marijuana buds are available at Touch of Aloha Cannabis Dispensary outside Depoe Bay along the Oregon Coast. The state has licensed pot dealers in every Oregon county bordering the Pacific Ocean, with the highest number near the beach in Lincoln County, state data show. But there's little so far to suggest marijuana is changing the coastal economy.
(Anna Reed/Statesman-Journal)


NEWPORT -- Eddie Biggar sports a black-and-green suit dotted with tiny green leaves as he dances jovially on a corner of the Pacific Coast Highway.

Some two-and-a-half hours southwest of Portland, he owns the sidewalk. Just like a sign-waiver might promote the local pizzeria, The Weedman boasts $5 grams, urging customers down the street to CannaMedicine.


The state has licensed pot dealers in every Oregon county bordering the Pacific Ocean, with the highest number near the beach here in Lincoln County, state data show. But there's little so far to suggest marijuana is changing the coastal economy, which is already largely fueled by tourism.


Still, there's no question many out-of-towners are heading into coastal pot shops. Retailers say they've seen people from China, Mexico, the Dominican Republic and South Korea.

"I've never seen so many different IDs in my life," Shane Ramos-Harrington said in Touch of Aloha, his Hawaii-themed marijuana outpost in the area of Depoe Bay, a community boasting the "world's smallest harbor."


In the sales room, a chalk board displaying daily deals promised a 5-percent discount to customers outfitted in Hawaiian shirts.

Ramos-Harrington came from Oahu and opened the business, now looking to spread a little aloha to Oregon. That means putting energy into people -- if they come into his store upset, hopefully they'll leave happy.


Oregon's stretch of oceanfront is no Southern California doppelganger. Regular dark clouds over the ocean and towns sometimes make it feel like the sky sits on people's shoulders. The sun rises over thick forests in the morning, setting over the water come evening.


"If you brought a swimsuit to the Oregon Coast, don't worry, someone will loan you a sweater," the Oregon Tourism Commission assures.


Near the coastal town of Yachats (yah-hawts), where hills cascade toward the ocean and visitors can buy crab fresh off the boat, Deb Cardy opened her uncluttered home for business.


Northeast Forest Hill Street branches off U.S. Highway 101 like a pine needle on a branch -- that is, if the branch crossed through three states.


Hang a left onto the dirt street and you're practically at Cardy's front door. The nearby ocean is her white noise. "You can hear the seals barking at night," the 61-year-old said.


Cardy has found a market for those wanting a place to stay the night and partake, with one of only five cannabis-friendly lodgings in Oregon listed on website Kush Tourism. She is running a new kind of bed-and-breakfast: a 420-friendly house within earshot of the Pacific.


She keeps hints of how welcome the crop is scattered around her house: "The Cannabis Kitchen Cookbook" on a counter; a small green cross above the numbers 420 and a smiley face on a wooden sign in her window; and three jars of her stash on a shelf near the front door.


"You don't have to have marijuana leaves on everything," she said.


The house is a one-story setup built in 1938 on enough land for her Artic Wolf-Huskie mix, Mia, and a fire pit.


Cardy came to this laid-back patch of Oregon after working almost four decades as a Colorado property manager.


"This is the most relaxing thing that you can do," she said.


Cardy, a medical marijuana patient, said she first used at age 12.


She wants to join other property owners up and down the coast to give vacationers a comfortable way to enjoy weed and the water.


"I live in one of the most beautiful places on the planet," Cardy said. "Why would I not want to share it?"


Larry Aguayo booked a stay with his wife last year.


Aguayo, a drummer, did a wedding gig about half an hour away in Newport, a much bigger city north of Yachats. They roomed at Cardy's afterward.


"It was just like being at home, knowing that we can go in there, we could medicate, not having to worry about going outside in the rain," Aguayo said. "At the motels, you've got to go outside."


During the trip, the Myrtle Creek, Oregon, couple also celebrated their anniversary at Cardy's place, which now runs $110 a night on home-sharing website Airbnb.com.

When they arrived, Cardy was ready to make dinner for them, Aguayo said, and there was a "big fat apple pie just like Mom makes."


And snacks in the bedroom, his wife Cindy said.


Larry Aguayo said: "Snacks. That's a big thing. In the 420 world, we like to eat."


A wave of retailers followed in the wake of the crop's legalization here, even though it remains federally illegal.


At Pipe Dreams Dispensary in oceanfront Lincoln City, a map on an interior wall inviting visitors to stick a pin in it to mark where they're from shows people come in from all manner of countries: Canada. India. Saudi Arabia. Spain.


Anyone can buy marijuana if they're old enough and have identification, Pipe Dreams owner Randy Mallette said.


"They can buy it, but there's nowhere for them to enjoy it. They can't take it to a hotel room," Mallette said. "Maybe if they get an edible -- but vaporizing, smoking and that whole culture is muted in a way."
-- Jonathan Bach 




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RedHat Ralph Treks 30 miles in 7 Days 
One of the samples from my Cultivation Classic Judges Kit
Cannabis Events Week 1: RedHat Ralph Treks 30 miles in 7 Days
April 26, 2017 


Since I picked up my Judges Kit for the 2017 Cultivation Classic this week, I will count this as the start of my season.  Here is how I walked 29.4 miles from Sunday April 9 through Saturday, April 15.


Sunday, 0.2 miles; Monday 1.1 miles.


I spent the weekend at home, cleaning the house while recovering from my Angiogram.  I finished off the last tenth of a gram of Quantum Kush flower, smoked a 1.0 gram joint of Plushberry over 6 sessions, and enjoyed two sessions of my 1.0 gram Cherry Pie joint.  This made for some nice recovery time.


Tuesday, 6.8 miles.


I took myself into town, walking from the MAX stop at Providence Park up into the Alphabet District, stopping by MindRite Dispensary (1780 NW Marshall) to see what they have in stock.  I purchased a gram of Dream Queen from High Latitude Farms, as well as a joint of Kimbo Kush that the budtender was packing when I first walked in.


After checking out the selections at Oregon’s Finest dispensary (1327 NW Kearney), I contacted  MC Chino to see if he was up for spending some time together, now that he had returned from his traveling adventure.  We drove up to Mt. Tabor Park, indulged in a couple of dab hits of some unidentified crumble as well as The White extract and then wandered around the park a couple of laps.  MC introduced me to a wonderful hot dog place (Zack’s Shack, on Hawthorne) before I walked the 2.8 miles to the NW Cannabis Club, on Powell Blvd.  There I used their dab rigs to take a couple of good hits of my Cinex BHO extract and accept another hit of Strawberry Cough extract from another Club member.


Wednesday, 7.3 miles.


Today I collect my judge’s kit!  I used TriMet to once again take me to Providence Park and then slowly wandered up through the Pearl district to be at Willamette Week’s office at 2pm.  Not only did I get my kit (Yippee!), Leah met up with me and gave me an Ooze Glacier Pen Kit to review (one vaporizes and inhales shatter with it).  Using public transportation I visited Frankie where I opened the judge’s kit for the first time and we looked it over.  We celebrated 4:20pm with some of the Kimbo Kush joint as well as some of the Dream Queen bud.  From Frankie’s I wandered over to Mississippi Ave and stopping by Bridge City Collective on my way to the MAX station.  Once home, I smoked two more bowls of Dream Queen and ate 2 segments of a Blaze Bar (110.6mg THC, divided into ten segments).


Thursday, 4.0 miles.


A good friend of mine, Josh Taylor, is loaning a vaporizer to me so that I can use it to evaluate the flower that was given to me to judge, so I met up with him at the Starbucks in Goose Hollow.  And what a vaporizer it is!  He has loaned me a Revolution VII, a unit built with love and exceptional components.  I love this thing!  From Goose Hollow I used public transportation to go to Canna-Daddy’s dispensary (17020 SE Division St) to see about some shatter to use in the Ooze Glacier Pen.  It dawned on me that among the samples in the judge’s kit I might spend a day with an intense sativa flower.  In that case, I might find it enjoyable to have a good Indica shatter around.  Although I had my sights set on a fairly inexpensive sample of shatter, I finally settled on a gram of SFV OG BHO shatter from Sirius Extracts.


From Division St I used public transportation to wander down toward Mt. Scott Park, where I finally visited Leia’s Place, a tea room that MC Chino suggested to me, and that will become one of my refuges in the southeast area of Portland.  I really like this place!  Here I was able to try the SFV OG BHO shatter, as well as accept a dab of another shatter from another patron.


Friday, 2.5 miles.


Finally, I have my vaporizer and my samples.  I can begin judging!  I take a few low temp hits of sample 6316. (Yes, I will be sampling the 14 different flowers in numerical order.)  This feels like a Sativa – so anxious; I need to do something!  Public transportation to OHSU to get an infusion of iron.  Public transportation back home.  While I was out and about I smoked two bowls of 6316.  Once home I continued testing the flower using the vaporizer.  I ended the night with a few draws of the SFV OG BHO extract.  Wow!  So Good!

Saturday, 7.5 miles.


Finally!  Spring has decided to visit PDX.  A clear day is upon us with (relatively) warm temperatures (might warm up to 60!).  Sample 6319’s Indica qualities hit me hard!  2 draws at 340° and 2 more at 360° have left me without a desire to walk.  So I forced myself to head out to Frankie’s so that we could take a walk and try out one of the CBD joints that East Fork Farms has included in our kit.  This was the first time either one of us had tried a high CBD smoke.  I learned later in the day that it seemed to help alleviate some of my foot pain, so I am definitely going to try out some more high CBD products.  By the end of the day I had smoked three bowls of the flower along with vaporizing half of the gram at temperatures from 300 to 430.  Nice!





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RedHat Ralph Continues his Canna-Quest 
Cannabis Event Season Week 2: RedHat Ralph Continues his Canna-Quest
May 8, 2017 

You might recall my canna-quest from my Week 1 post, but this week includes the (un)official holiday for cannabis consumers, 420 (or April 20, for those of you not familiar with the cannabis culture).  I am also still vaping and smoking the 14 samples of cannabis flower for the 2017 Cultivation Classic.  Here is how I walked 25.6 miles from Sunday April 16 through


Saturday, April 22. Sunday, 6.3 miles.


Today I am judging sample 6430 from my judge’s kit. By 10am I have completed whatever computer “work” I need to do so I start vaping, taking a half dozen inhales between 300° and 360°. Next I am taking TriMet to the northeast area of Portland to visit Frankie and get his opinion on 6430.  From Frankie’s place I wander south down Mississippi Ave, cross the Willamette River via the Steel Bridge, wander along the river for a while and catch TriMet back home.  I left at noon, back by 6pm, and have smoked four bowls (around a tenth of a gram of flower is a bowl, for me).




Monday 0.6 miles.  


Along with my enjoyment of flower sample 6457 via the Revolution VII vaporizer, today I have a medical appointment at OHSU.


Tuesday, 0.6 miles.  


Clean the house day, and, of course, sample 6550.


Wednesday, 5.4 miles.  


Today is the Oregon Cannabis Association’s Federal and State Update with Congressman Earl Blumenauer at Lola’s Room (under the Crystal Ballroom on Burnside).  Plus, since they are giving their employees 420 off (as a holiday, of course), Jayne is having their 420 sale today.  I am vaping sample 6935 before heading out, then smoking the flower in my pipe as I wander.  Jayne is located on MLK so it was a nice walk from there to Lola’s Room.  The OCA Update was a wonderful gathering of some of the local Cannabis Industry’s movers and shakers.


RedHat Ralph


Thursday, 4.9 miles.  


Yay!  4/20 is here.  Although it is a rainy morning, the forecast indicates that it should clear up at 4 so I am heading out.  By 10am TriMet had taken me to Southeast Portland for my first cannabis stop of the day at Kaleafa Cannabis Company, where I took advantage of their sale on extract, scoring a gram for just over $15.  From there I walked north along SE Cesar Estrada Chavez Blvd. which brought me to Natural Wonders.  I really love this little neighborhood shop; it is one of our area’s undiscovered gems.  I have found a couple of very nice products here, including some Hell’s OG last year that was excellent.  This time I picked up three half gram joints which set me back just over $5.  


Since the rain was persisting I decided to take a bus up to Pure Green (located along Portland’s Green Mile, a section of NE Sandy Blvd) to take advantage of their sale.  I picked up 4 grams of flower and an Avitas half gram oil vaporizer cartridge for a total of $36.  Shortly after 1pm I headed into the NW Cannabis Club for their day of fun, including Potluck PDX (for which I have a VIP ticket).  Along with all the medicated food that Bill Stewart (Half Baked Labs) prepared and served with the assistance of JoDee and Edwina, I sampled extracts of a few of the other participants, including Michael Schroder of Aftermath Alchemy LLC and Franco (whose design is two capital Fs, back to back).


 At 4:20pm I was out on the patio in a smoking circle, celebrating as many pre-rolls passed through many hands.  Man I love this life!  Around 5:30pm a wonderful couple (Memphis and ?) began creating fruit drinks with some great infused fruit syrup.  As I began sipping the beverage it dawned on me that this was the first liquid I had consumed since coffee at 9am.  So great!  Butte Creek Farms had a table in the VIP area where I sampled a couple of bong hits of their Dream Queen flower.  It is such a good thing that I use public transportation.


4:20 smoke circle

Smoke circle ammunition for 4:20 p.m. on 4/20 at the NW Cannabis Club


Friday, 6.8 miles.  


Finally, a spring day in Portland.  The sky is blue and it may get to 70°F today.  Frankie likes the color and flavor of sample 7087, as do I.  This has such a deep purple flower, is so very sugary, and is so very delicious; for me it tastes like a cookie.  We agree that this is a good social strain, at least for us.  Along with this we sampled one of the three joints I picked up yesterday at Natural Wonders.  


For me, one of the places I like to people-watch is along the Willamette River.  From Tom McCall Park on the west bank I headed south to the Steel Bridge (it is the only bridge I have found over which I can walk).  Along the way Stephen Gold and his cousin Casey stopped to talk with me and share some of the Black Lime Reserve (from CannaDaddy’s) 1 gram joint they happened to be enjoying.  Wonderful flavor!  Eventually I made my way around the river to OMSI and then on to the NW Cannabis Club to enjoy another evening of 420 fun.  At one of the tables I found Trinn Allen of Egreen Oils with vaporizers for flower and oil, along with a dab rig and some wonderful extract of LSD #4.  Imagine my surprise when Mr. Allen gave me, for review, one of the Egreen Oils Cognito Mini Vape Kit for Concentrates and Dry Herbs.  Look for that review soon.


Saturday, 1.0 miles.  


A day at home to clean some, write some, and prepare for tomorrow’s travel to Seattle for Dope Cup 2017.






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RedHat Ralph's Weeks 3 and 4 of Oregon Cannabis Events

The Weed Blog Oregon Cannabis Industry Mixer and Networking Event was also a fundraiser for The Cascades AIDS Project (CAP). Here, the CAP Development Director speaks to the crowd at the event.

RedHat Ralph’s Weeks 3 and 4 of Oregon Cannabis Events

on May 15, 2017

My posts of Week 1 and Week 2 were so full of activity, I didn’t think they could be topped until Weeks 3 and 4 came around!


Cannabis Season – Week 3


This week includes Dope Cup 2017, another wander to Frankie’s place, and visits to some of my favorite downtown Portland dispensaries. Here is how I walked 13.0 miles from Sunday April 23 through Saturday, April 29.


Sunday, 1.7 miles.


I took the BoltBus from Portland to Seattle and then walked about a mile south to Dockside Cannabis to attend Dope Cup 2017. It was, of course, raining most of the short walk there, but timing worked for me. When they opened the event gates at 4pm, I was in very quickly. By the time my phone’s 4:20pm alarm rang out (yes, I actually have an alarm to remind me that it is 4:20 – don’t we all?),


I had stowed my overnight bag and backpack in the VIP tent and was taking a dab hit from one of the many setups throughout the venue. My right foot is bothering me so much that I staked out a wonderful seat in the VIP tent where I stayed most of the afternoon, participating in puff-puff-pass as well as dab-dab-dab. It was here that I was fortunate enough to try some high CBD shatter (from Katie, a very lovely young lady sitting next to me) which alleviated the pain in my foot enough to allow me to take a couple of strolls through the exhibits.


I was also fortunate enough to try some Ruderalis shatter, and to introduce Max Montrose (Trichome Institute) to the shatter and its maker. Max has been doing research into Ruderalis and was very interested in talking with the grower and sampling some of his product.


I also spent quality time with Anthony Nitowski (the dab doctor) and some of his Blueberry Pancakes extract. I always value the time I get to spend with Anthony; he has taught me so much. Amber Joy (Sensi Magazine) had offered me a couch upon which to rest in between BoltBus trips, so I met up with her at the end of the event and we proceeded to the after-party at Oak Crush.


Being a non-consumer of alcohol, I looked for other forms of entertainment at the downtown Seattle watering hole. First I found the DabStar trailer where I took a couple of dab hits, then joined a smoking circle where I had the privilege to puff-puff-pass a Leira Cigar. Wow! This was fantastic! I also met Joe “Doc” of DocAndYeti, the farmers whose Indica flower (Brandywine) and Sativa flower (Red Headed Stranger) each won their category of Best (Indica/Sativa) Dominant Flower at the event.




Dope Cup Washington 2017

Dope Cup Washington 2017


Monday 1.1 miles.


By the time I arrived in downtown Portland I was still too tired to attend the Oregon Cannabis Association’s Toke Talks event at the Aladdin Theatre. Luckily for me, Flo was able to meet me at the bus stop and drive me home.


Tuesday, 0.2 miles.


Another day at home; at least I still have all those samples to judge for the Cultivation Classic. Today I shall see what sample #7246 offers to me. Oh, seems I have found another Indica dominant. Good for me. Let’s relax. Oooooooooommmmmmmmmmm.


Wednesday, 2.5 miles.


I need to take another wander, and one of my favorite dispensaries, Serra (the downtown location) is having an open house so I think I will wander that way. Fortunately for me, today’s sample, #7729, displays sativa-like qualities. Unfortunately for me, the Cognito flower vape pen that I am testing is not providing very much vapor. After attending the open house I wandered to the NW Cannabis Club to see if anyone there has experience with this sort of vape pen and can offer any advice. Here I met Zack and fell in lust with his concentrate vape pen, although I was too buzzed to make note of the manufacturer of the pen. I’m sure I will talk with Zack again.


Thursday, 1.1 miles.


This is Dining Out for Life day. Flo and I took the MAX into Portland and shared a meal with Sara, our dearest of friends from our time living in downtown. Sara owns Turning Earth Farms (not a Cannabis Farm!) and is just one of the best folks we know.


Friday, 0.1 miles.


Between my foot and the weather, this is another good day to stay home. One of the things Flo and I did was to clip some leaves on my 8 plants, rub each on their own sample card, and send it all off to discover the gender of each plant. As an OMMP patient I can legally grow 6 Cannabis plants on my property in Oregon.


Saturday, 6.3 miles.


The Daily Leaf informed me that I might be able to find a disposable vape pen at one of the downtown dispensaries for $5, so foot issues or not I am heading out. After purchasing a REL vape pen of Dogwalker OG at Thurman Street Collective I walked north and visited Slabtown (on Nicolai) where I was able to purchase 1/8th of an ounce of Golden Ticket flower for $18, then east to one of my favorite dispensaries, Vessel (on Vaughn). Sara has many extremely frosted flowers on hand, including Mango Kush, Sherbet (man I love the look of this one so much!), and 9lb Hammer. I visited Frankie and we shared stories and cannabis. It is nice to have someone with whom to share cannabis and cannabis stories.


Cannabis Season – Week 4


This week includes The Weed Blog’s Oregon Cannabis Industry Mixer and Networking Event, helping my good friend, Rosie McGee, at her book signing, and the beginning of this year’s Dispensary Tour. Here is how I walked 18.7 miles from Sunday April 30 through Saturday, May 6.


Sunday, 0.3 miles.


Between my foot pain and the cold spring rain, this is not a great day to go out and about. I stayed around the house and vaped another sample from the Cultivation Classic judge’s kit. Spending days at home with Flo is a wonderful use of my time.


Monday, 0.3 miles.


Another day at home for me. Today I spent some time with the Cognito flower vaporizer pen. I vaporized some of the Blueberry Cookies flower that I was gifted when I was given the pipe. I also tried out some of the Oregon Diesel that I was gifted from my great friend Sara.


Tuesday, 0.6 miles.


Third day in a row at home. Still testing the Cognito vape pen, today with some of the Golden Ticket (not impressed) and Jack Frost (nice) that I had picked up last week. I also cleaned up the house a bit, especially my vape/smoke area in the garage. Here in Oregon, the only legal place to smoke is on private property while out of sight of the general population. For me, that place is my garage since I do not want the living area of our home to smell of cannabis.


Wednesday, 8.3 miles.


Today is the Weed Blog’s Oregon Cannabis Industry Mixer and Networking Event at the Lagunitas Community Room, so today I head out. Since the event isn’t until 6pm, I decided to visit Frankie first. We tried out the draw on the new Veritas oil cartridge I picked up on 4/20 (wonderful!) and shared some of Pacheco’s Keen joint (very good) that was included with the judge’s kit.


I wandered down Albina until it turned into Mississippi Ave, then continued south. The sights and aromas along Mississippi are absolutely wonderful! If you find yourself in this area of Portland spend some time at Nectar Dispensary; they usually have some very nice selections. The Weed Blog Mixer was another stellar event with many folks from the industry gathered to support a worthwhile cause; in this edition that is the Cascade AIDS Project. I met some wonderful folks for the first time, as well as renewing existing acquaintances.


cannabis networking event

The Weed Blog Oregon Cannabis Industry Mixer and Networking Event was also a fundraiser for The Cascades AIDS Project (CAP). Here, the CAP Development Director speaks to the crowd at the event.


Thursday, 1.5 miles.


Today I have to visit my cardiologist, a necessary evil since they discovered my need for a double bypass and aorta reconstructive surgery. To make up for that, I have the privilege of spending time with one of my great friends, Rosie McGee, whom I met last decade when we were all working at the Grand Canyon National Park. Rosie has published the book “Dancing with the Dead”, chronicling her life with the Grateful Dead between 1963 and 1973, and makes presentations based upon the book and her photos. This year she has modified her presentation to focus on “the summer of love” which occurred 50 years ago this summer. It is always my pleasure to join her at any and all of her events.


Friday, 1.4 miles.


Another day working around the house. I make our usual monthly visit to Target and Costco, then spend the day using the Evolution VII vaporizer to enjoy some Sour Apple + Corazon (mixed in the grinder) and Grand Poohbah + Corazon (again, mixed in the grinder). I am trying to find a good remedy for my foot pain, and these work really well! Thank you so much Yerba Buena.


Saturday, 6.3 miles.


Today I begin my Summer Dispensary Tour. Last year, in my attempt to recover from right-foot surgery, I decided to use public transportation and my feet to wander to all of the dispensaries in the greater Portland area. For the purposes of my tour, I consider any dispensary in Washington, Multnomah, or Clackamas counties to which I can plan a trip using TriMet. For this year’s journey I am starting as far west as possible, beginning with Phresh Cannabis in Forest Grove.


Phresh Cannabis – This is the first dispensary in which I have found Pot Shot, a decarboxylated product containing THC or CBD that can be used to make any food medicated. They have decent pricing on flower.

Shango @ Forest Grove – I have to leave my backpack in the waiting room, which is first dispensary in which I have been asked to do that. They have a small number of flower strains, none of which peeked my interest. They do have many extract and oil choices. I choose a 1 gram pre-roll of Sticky B which costs me $8 (medical pricing). Let’s see how it does for me.

Mahalo “Keep it Local” – a nice local shop with some fantastic looking flower. Steve is very patient with me, taking the time to show me the selections. I was impressed with presentation of Dutch Treat from Rogue River Botanicals and Purple Hindu Kush from Tomato Hill Company. Unfortunately for me, they have sold out of all of their joints. Good for their customers!

Shango @ Hillsboro – this is normally a very busy dispensary along TV Highway. Last year it was one of my favorite dispensaries in Washington County. This year, however, I have visited it three times and each time have left more underwhelmed.


Stay tuned for Week 5!






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by RedHat Ralph 

RedHat Ralph’s Top 10 Marijuana Dispensary Picks in Portland, Oregon

May 23, 2017 

I have been writing for The Weed Blog for several months now, but many of you might not know that the whole reason my path ever crossed with the site’s owners was because of a by-chance meeting at an event at Serra Cannabis on SE Belmont. Leah was so intrigued with my story about how I walked or took public transportation to all 181 of Portland’s dispensaries that she wrote an article about it. Since then, I have continued to tromp around the City of Portland and attend as many cannabis related events as I can and visit as many dispensaries/cannabis retail shops as I can.  I have just started my dispensary tour for this summer, and you can read the beginning of it here.  Retired life in this place is wonderful!

I often get asked questions about different dispensaries, but the the question I am asked most often by far is:

What dispensary in the Portland area do you recommend?

Here is my answer- RedHat Ralph’s Top 10 Marijuana Dispensary Picks in Portland:

  1. If you live in Portland, get to know the selections and budtenders in your local neighborhood dispensary.  Most of the dispensaries in our area are small businesses which cater to the neighborhood, and they do a really good job at that.  It is so important to support all of your local businesses, including dispensaries/cannabis retail shops!
  1. If you don’t live in Portland but find yourself in our area, here are some of the dispensaries (in alphabetical order) you might want to visit:
  1. Cannabliss & Co. – Firestation 23 (on SE 7th Ave) – Great building!

Electric Lettuce (on SW Marlow) – I love the vibe, and the selections.


Farma (on SE Hawthorne) – the most science and very high quality selections


Green Goddess Remedies (on SW Taylors Ferry Rd) – great budtenders and selections


MindRite (on NW Marshall) – always very knowledgeable and great selections


Natural Wonders (on SE Cesar E Chavez) – always some great selections


Oregon’s Finest (on NE MLK) – the quintessential retail outlet


Serra (downtown on 1st) – bring your artistic heads; great views and selections


Stone Age Farmacy (on SW Canyon Dr) – always great budtenders and great selections Vessel (on NW Vaughn) – My absolute favorite; some of the best flower I have ever seen!


The cannabis I consume is an intrastate commerce, meaning that it all happens within the state.  Every bud is grown in Oregon soil, processed in Oregon, and sold to consumers without ever leaving the state.  To this end, any purchase of cannabis or cannabis infused products from a dispensary within the state culminates a process which has taken place entirely intrastate.  


Our purchases keep commerce and financing all within Oregon.  These purchases support Oregon folks who plan the grow operations, till the land, care for the crops, supply the business knowledge and daily rituals, process the crop into extracts and edibles, and perform countless other services for our benefit.  Spending our money at Oregon dispensaries supports Oregonians.  As long as the federal government continues to support the federal prohibition on our bud, we exist in this wonder-world of extremely high quality product being cultivated (in the social sense, as well as the horticultural sense) by some of the most socially conscience folks in the world.  


Enjoy visiting these dispensaries, first as a local and then with your out-of-town guests!  Maybe I will see you there! :)  As a matter of fact, if you see a big old guy wearing a red hat with a “Get Baked” pin on it, say hi!  Or, say high! :)




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Week 5 of Cannabis Season in Oregon


on May 30, 2017

Week 5 of cannabis season in Oregon includes the Cultivation Classic at Revolution Hall, its reception for the speakers the evening before the event, and the After Party the evening of the event.  I also continued with the Dispensary Tour, this week around the Beaverton area.  Here is how I walked 35.5 miles from Sunday May 7 through Saturday, May 13.


Sunday, 7.8 miles.

I begin by taking the Blue line MAX and then the bus to Westside Wellness on Shaw.  Shaw has no sidewalk, something that I recall from last year’s journey occurs with a few of the dispensaries I visit.  For those of us who use public transportation and our feet, this is something to note.  

Here are the dispensaries:

Westside Wellness – They have quite a selection of flower, pre-rolls, extracts, and edibles.  Of note to me is a beautiful flower named Cascade from Moto Perpetuo.



La Mota – Leslie (budtender) took a lot of time with me, presenting many flowers for my view.  A couple of standouts include Obama Kush from Rosebud Farm (25.27% THC – 0.24% CBD) and Dog Shit X Cherry Pie from High Winds Farm (24.43% THC – 0.61% CBD)


Blooming Deals by Cannabis Nation – When you first enter the dispensary you can view and sniff the samples that are laid out on long tables while you wait your turn.  The idea is great but I couldn’t smell very much at all through the container’s sniff holes.  The budtenders were absolutely wonderful and offered all of the flower for my review.  Three of the interesting flowers are Cotton Candy Kush, Jazz, and Power Wreck.


Monday, 6.3 miles.  

Electric Lettuce – From the Sunset Transit Station it is a very short walk over US26 to this dispensary, or more properly “head shop”.  As I have mentioned, this is one of the shops I think is worth visiting, especially for “pot heads”.  They feature flower from two of my favorite farms, Yerba Buena and Prūf Cultivar.  Meesh (budtender) took her time to discuss many of the items available, including Leif Goods Mint Hibiscus Chocolate Bar (38.5mg THC – 40.4mg CBD) and “The Dabaratus”, a new packaging of extract distillate from O.penVAPE.  This is something I want to try in the near future.


Green Mart – Bree (budtender) spent a lot of time reviewing their selections with me.  I bought 1.25 grams of a frosty Sativa named Lemon Meringue from Avitas (24.46% THC – 2.32% CBD).  Grinding this flower with Yerba Buena’s Corazon (0.77% THC – 19.33%CBD) yields a mixture with 12.62% THC and 10.82% CBD; hopefully this mixture will help alleviate my right-foot pain.


Oregon Bud Company – I will be returning in a week or so to see their new deliveries; they were really low on stock although very helpful.


Kaleafa – They take plastic!  There is a small service charge for using a credit or debit card, but the fact that they take plastic is unusual, and fantastic!  They have an incredible number of strains available to peruse, including Lemon Meringue from Avitas, Pot of Gold from Cannabis Wholesale By Marico, Scooby Snacks from Kool Kush Farm, and Lime Warp from Kool Kush Farms.  I also noted that among their numerous concentrate selections are many under $30 a gram.


Tuesday, 7.7 miles.  

I took the day off from the Dispensary Tour to take advantage of the deal on REL vape cartridges.  From time to time REL releases 0.25g disposable CO2 oil cartridges for $5.  Today that release took me to Botanica on SE 12th Ave as well as Botanica on SE 60th Ave.  After spending a total of $10 to get 0.5g of oil, I decided to enjoy the sun by walking the East Esplanade along the Willamette River, crossing the river on the Steel Bridge, and wandering up Tom McCall Waterfront Park.


Wednesday, 0.1 miles

I stay around the house, work on computer stuff and spend time with Flo.


Thursday, 8.4 miles

Today is the Cultivation Classic Welcome Reception and I shall be manning the check-in table.  From noon thirty until 3:30 I wander the Alphabet District, visiting MindRite Dispensary and pick up another $5 REL CO2 cartridge. From there I wander through downtown, visit Stumptown Coffee and Voodoo Doughnut on 3rd Ave, then along the Willamette River to the Pearl District and finally to Vessel Dispensary on Vaughn St.  I finally decide to buy two samples of their fantastically frosted flower (9 Pound Hammer and Qrazy Train).  The afternoon/evening at Breakside Brewery is absolutely wonderful!  So many quality folks making both social and business contacts to further enhance the experiences we, the consumers, will see in the new future.  I finally get to spend time talking and walking with Kevin Jodrey and Pedro from Wonderland Nursery in Humboldt County.


9 pound hammer bud

9 Pound Hammer

Qrazy Train Bud

Qrazy Train


Friday, 5.1 miles

Finally, it is Cultivation Classic!  Weeks of judging culminate in tonight’s award ceremony.  I am up at 5:30 to use public transportation and arrive at Revolution Hall before 8am.  Wow, Whitney (formerly with Stumptown Coffee) is now the barista at Martha’s; it is wonderful reconnecting with her!  I help set up the green room, accomplish odd tasks here and there, take a couple of walks around the neighborhood (Revolution Hall has a liquor license, so there can be no cannabis consumption anywhere on the property).  Steph handed me the speaker timetable (1pm to 6pm) and put me in charge of keeping it on time.  


Unbeknownst to Steph, she just handed a precision timing job to Adrian Monk (Mister OCD).  Although the program began 7 minutes late, it ended on time and each speaker knew when they had to begin wrapping it up. (I’m a big guy in a red hat; it’s difficult to miss me if I want you to see me).  From Congressman Earl Blumenauer to Dr. Ethan Russo and Dr. Adie Poe, the speakers are all intelligent, articulate, committed, and engaging.  We all learned so much!  Just as importantly, at least to me, is visiting with some of my friends and colleagues in the cannabis community.  It is during these types of events that we have the opportunity to reconnect and recharge.


Saturday 0.1 miles

Today I feel my age, and my sore feet.  Flo and I have a whole day to spend with each other.  Man I love my wife!  And yes, I definitely love my life.




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25 miles in Week 6: Ralph’s Cannabis Events and Dispensary Stops


June 7, 2017 

Cannabis Season Week 6 was a good one!


This week includes my appointment at Hanger Clinic regarding my custom molded orthotics and the Cannabis Industry meet up at Prism House.   I also continue with my Dispensary Tour, this week around the Beaverton area.  Here is how I walked 25.3 miles from Sunday May 14 through Saturday, May 20.


Sunday, 5/14/17,

1.0 miles. It was a quiet day at home, writing up my thoughts on last week’s wandering when Pedro texted me.  Flo accompanied me to the NW Cannabis Club where she became their newest member.  As she sat and read, Kevin Jodrey and I spent hours wrapped in a far-reaching conversation regarding his history, businesses, and thoughts of the future relative to cannabis.  Over many dabs of Jack Herer I learned much from one of the most experienced cannabis entrepreneurs in our time. I look forward to our next conversation.  And now Flo knows what the NW Cannabis Club looks like and will be able to accompany me there in the future.


Monday, 5/15/17, 7.5 miles.  

Today I get to have the prosthetic in my shoe evaluated by the tech at Hanger Clinic, and wow did he do a great job.  Now I get to walk on it for a few days and see if it will work long term.  From Beaverton I take public transportation to arrive at Canna-Daddy’s on SE Division, almost 20 miles away.  I am going there to take advantage of another one of the REL vape pen $5 sales.  I arrive at the dispensary just after noon, two hours after they open, and they inform me that the sale items are not yet in their inventory, so they cannot sell one to me. After contacting Steve Gold (The Daily Leaf) about the issue, I wander westward, finally stopping in at The Green Remedy where I pick up a gram of Yerba Buena’s Silver Hawk flower.



Tuesday, 5/16/17, 0.8 miles.

 One of the first things I do in the morning is to put on my eyeglasses.  It is all part of a morning ritual that has evolved over a lifetime.  This morning was a bit different because the left arm of my rimless titanium frames broke a centimeter from the left lens.  It is rather difficult to properly focus when your spectacles no longer provide the correct distances for the angles to work in your favor.  It took a short while, but I finally found a wonderful and competent technician to correctly weld the arm and provide an affordable short term solution.  For a long term solution, I am turning to my brother Clarke who has owned his own optical shop in Apopka (FL) for a few decades now and has graciously supplied eyeglass services to his family.


Wednesday, 5/17/17, 0.2 miles.  A cool and rainy day, which I will spend catching up on stuff around the house.


Thursday, 5/18/17, 9.6 miles.

 Today I hit the road again on my 2017 Dispensary Tour.  


Oregon Bud Company – Since the budtenders at Oregon Bud Company indicated last week that they would be receiving some new flower this week, I decide to begin with them.  First, this is one of the few dispensaries which do not have an ID check-in before heading into the retail part of the store.  I am so glad that I wandered back in just to check out their Pineapple Trainwreck, testing at 32.1% THC.  And then there is their GG#5 at 27.7% THC.  I would also like to try out the Crème Royal, based solely on the wonderful odor of the terpenes.  Oh yes, that wafting aroma!


Growing Releaf – along with checking out flower, I like to check on the prices of OMMP edibles, since they are becoming harder to find on dispensary shelves, and the prices are all over the place.  Here I found the Squib 100 edibles are $14, one of the lowest prices I have found anywhere.  They also have the OLCC approved 50mg+/- Grön chocolate bars at $15 for medical card patients, which is one of the lowest prices I have seen for this.


Stash Cannabis Company – When you bring up this Dispensary on Leafly, it displays only “Overview” and “Reviews”.  However, if you Google search for them you find a Leafly menu which displays only 8 chemovars (strains).  [Today, 5/23/17, they display 10 chemovars.]  Stash has only a few of the extracts that have flooded other dispensaries, and maintains only a small number of edibles.


The Green Planet – they have moved two stores down from their old location and in so doing they have expanded their showroom to become a very large glass and pipe retail outlet, with cannabis as another facet of the retail experience.  The first strain I was shown is a Purple Hindu Kush by HGP, selling at only $9 a gram.  For this chemovar, the price is excellent.  I was also shown a Northern Wreck from 45th Parallel Farms, testing in at 30.7% THC, White Super Skunk by Cultivated Industries, and Sweet Meringue by Novik Industries LLC, which is one of the best looking flowers I have seen today.  I looked at some of the other offerings from Novik (I hadn’t seen any of their flower before today) and have them in my mind to see what else of theirs I can find over this summer.


Stone Age Farmacy – anyone following my blog will note that I included this dispensary among my 10 best.  Today they have 44 chemovars on their shelves; a wonderful abundance of choices for the consumer!  Many of their offerings are grown by Stone Age Gardens in south Oregon and are some of the frostiest flower I have seen (as are most of the offerings found in all of the dispensaries on my top ten list).  I asked to be shown a sample from each end of the spectrum as well as a balanced hybrid, and they didn’t disappoint.  I was offered:  Blue Dream (25.6% THC), as a sativa dominant flower; Beast OG (19.7% THC), as an indica dominant flower; and Cherry Bomb (19.9% THC) as the sweet tasting middle ground hybrid.  However, with so many choices on flower, I doubt that you could go wrong with throwing a dart and picking any flower on the shelf.  And, something that retired consumers may like, there is a public restroom within the dispensary.


Parlour Cannabis Shoppe – let me start right off by saying that they have 1oz bags of shake for $70 medical ($80 recreational)!  For those who are interested in making edibles (canna butter is really big in Oregon at this time) or rolling joints old-school, this is something that is absolutely wonderful to find.  I have only found a few dispensaries out of the nearly 200 in our area who keep bags of shake on the shelf, so it is important to let you know when I discover another one.  Today they have 24 chemovars on their shelves and showed me a beautiful looking Lavender Trainwreck (20.6% THC) and Shaolin Kush (25.3% THC), both from Mindful Organics.  The Shaolin Kush is so very loaded with calyxes that it almost appeared to have a white cast.  It is oh-so-yummy looking!  For me, this dispensary is the prime example of how I see Cannabis storefronts becoming mainstream.  This shop is located within a very nice strip mall at a very busy 6-way intersection, with its name right along every other business, as one good business neighbor to another.  If you find yourself near the Sesame Donuts at the intersection of Scholls Ferry Rd and Beaverton-Hillsdale Hwy, visit this dispensary.  You will not be disappointed, and you may need to buy more doughnuts.


Five Zero Trees West – the first thing I notice while they are confirming my IDs (for OMMP cardholders we turn over our driver’s license as well as our OMMP card), is that they have tie-dyed shirts for their dispensary.  This is right up my alley, as it would be for many old-school pot heads of my generation.  So they get an early point for that!  They also have public restrooms, so another point for that.  The shelves are fully stocked, with 5 CBD-heavy chemovars, 14 high shelf chemovars ($12/g), 21 regular shelf chemovars ($10/g), and 5 special chemovars ($8/g).  When asked to show me a few examples of the best flower in the shop, my budtender produced: Golden Cobra by Bull Run Farms; Key Lime Pie from Prūf Cultivar (among the best farms in Oregon, IMHO); Primate Adhesive [definitely not a Gorilla Glue, since that is a trademarked name]from Nelson and Co; and BB #3 also from Nelson and Co.  In addition to the flower, they create 1 gram pre-rolls from flower on each of the three pricing levels, yielding joints that also cost $8, $10, and $12 each.  And, just for fun, they create $6 one-gram pre-rolls from a mixture of flowers all from TJ Gardens (another of those top tier cannabis farms, IMHO).  These are a definite bargain for those that need to pick up a few party favors and would like nothing better than a hybrid time for very little money.


New Vansterdam Medical – do not be fooled; even though “Medical” is in the name, they have had their recreational license since April.  This is the first dispensary where I have found Busy Bee flavored RSO (74.5% THC, 6.1% CBD, 3.4% CBN), and at $35 a gram it is one of the best prices for RSO I have seen anywhere.  Another first for me is a product from Canavore called “Weekend Getaway Kit”.  According to the label, it includes 4 half-gram joints and one 15mg edible, all for $30 to medical patients.  Based solely on quantity, this is a fantastic deal, assuming that the quality is anywhere near Oregon normal.  When asked to show me their best buds from the 20 chemovars on the shelf, they opted for: Mindful Kush from Mindful Organics (it had many mature calyxes, indicating that it was not rushed during its flushing and drying cycles); Shaolin Kush #11 from Mindful Organics; and Forum Cut Girl Scout Cookies from Frost Farms.  These are three more examples of Oregon flower with which one cannot go wrong.


Friday, 5/19/17, 6.1 miles.  

Hey, I woke up to the Daily Leaf’s notice of another $5 REL vape pen drop, followed closely by a notice that it would not happen until noon.  No problem, and thanks for the heads up!  So off I go to Cannabis Corner in Southeast Portland, across from Mt. Scott Park.  When I arrived at 1:30pm they were extremely busy, too busy to spend much time chitchatting with me.  I will visit again later in the summer for a Dispensary Tour visit.  From here I walk the mile to Deanz Greenz on Foster to spend some time with Steve from The Daily Leaf at a networking event.  Here I spend some time with the folks from WHO (Walking Happy Oil) where I win a new lapel pin for my hat as well as the guys from Novik Industries where I earn a free t-shirt for purchasing some of their flower at the dispensary.  Since it is such a nice sunny day, I head to OMSI (Oregon Museum of Science and Industry) and walk the East Esplanade along the Willamette River, cross the Steel Bridge, and continue south along the west bank of the river to Tom McCall Waterfront Park.  I love walking this route, as it is both wonderful to view and provides some fantastic people watching.  Although the people might not be dressed as I remember the lovely ladies of my youth along the stretches of sandy beach in New Smyrna Beach, the spring and summer fashions along the river in Portland are quite spectacular for this old man.  As the afternoon wears on, I head to the NW Cannabis Club to enjoy the company of other like-minded folks.  And tonight is a special sesh (we are too lazy to say session – two syllables and all ) featuring samples provided by Clay Wolf, a local extract producer.  And oh, are they so very flavorful!  And smooth.  And potent!  I love my life!


Saturday 5/20/17, 0.1 miles.  Home, with Flo.  I feel as though I am the luckiest person in the world, living the luckiest life possible.  Until next week, peace out.






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Ralph’s Portland Dispensary Tour and Cannabis Event Season Continues 


June 12, 2017 

Cannabis Season – Week 7 – Dispensary Tour


This week includes Serra’s (Belmont) 1-year anniversary, The Weed Blog’s sponsored happy hour at Cravedog (North Tillamook), and the beginnings of Memorial Day weekend.  


 I also continue with my Dispensary Tour, this week wandering through the area between and around the 217/I5 corridors southwest of Portland and east of Beaverton.  This tour is different than my top picks, but equally awesome and fun!


Here is how I walked 47.1 miles from Sunday May 21 through Saturday, May 27.


Dispensary Tour began Sunday, 5/21/17, 7.8 miles. With temperatures predicted to reach the upper 80s, I decide that celebrating the first warm days of spring/summer by people watching along the Willamette River is what I will do today.  First I will visit Frankie and share most of whatever I have with him.  I take public transportation from Frankie’s to the Hawthorne Bridge, where I begin my walk along the river at OMSI.  I wander north for nearly two miles, cross over the Steel Bridge and wander south to Tom McCall Waterfront Park.  The Saturday Market is in full swing and the whole west bank is being readied for the Rose Festival which begins on May 26.



Monday, 5/22/17, 5.2 miles.  

We go from temperatures two days ago in the 60s to yesterday in the 80s and today in the 90s.  Another wonderful day to wander the parks along the Willamette River.


Tuesday, 5/23/17, 0.5 miles.  Stayed home and wrote last week’s blog


Wednesday, 5/24/17, 10.8 miles.  Time to wander the dispensaries.


Local Leaf – This is a great dispensary which also contains the Portland Cannabis Museum, which is why I included it as part of my Dispensary Tour.  Many of the artifacts here are some of the ones I saw in the 60s and 70s as a young cannabis consumer growing up along our Eastern Seaboard.  It is a wonderful piece of nostalgia for anyone interested in a bit of cannabis history and humor.  I counted 28 chemovars on the shelf, including a frosty strain named Rug Burn from Cannanands at 28.39% THC and Platinum Animal Cookies from Phyre Farms testing at 17.9% THC, each at $12 a gram.  Local Leaf also runs daily specials, and on this day they are selling Super Maximus (a sativa hybrid) and Raspberry Kush (an indica), each from Potluck Farms for $5 a gram and $8 a gram each (for medical patients) respectively.  Also, at $32 for medical patients, the price for Empower’s 4-Play is the best I have found in any dispensary.

local leaf and my dispensary tour


The CDC – One of the first things that I notice at The CDC is that they have a recycling box for our empty plastic pre-roll and flower containers.  I confirmed with the manager that these containers are recycled by their container vendor.  I count 24 chemovars plus 3 more that are CBD heavy strains.  All of the flower choices here are $11.70 per gram or less for recreational sales, so the prices here are some of the most reasonable I have encountered store-wide.  I also notice that they have Beehive extracts (many strains!) for $30.50 per gram for medical patients and $35 per gram for recreational.

CDC dispensary


CS Laboratories, Inc. – I left my Senior Cannabis Consumer business card with one of the ladies at the reception desk who told me that she would put it on Stephanie’s desk and that she would see it when she returned to the office.  I do not know if CS Laboratories will let me tour their facilities, as part of my dispensary tour, but rarely does it hurt to ask.

Vacant Storefront – The State of Oregon maintains a list of recreational cannabis businesses and a list of medical cannabis businesses.  The second list includes WWMP, LLC as a medical cannabis business located at 12215 SW Main St., Ste A Tigard.  However, when I visited this address, all I found was an empty storefront ready to lease.

empty dispensary storefront


Chalice Farms Tigard – This is another dispensary who recycles our ready-to-be-discarded plastic containers, and should have a recycling box in each dispensary location, according to the budtenders and managers on duty today.  Chalice does have a restroom in the dispensary for their customers.  They have many chemovars, but other than some “smell” jars, all of their flower product is pre-packaged and they have a 2 gram minimum for their flower purchases.  When asked to show a couple of their best flowers at the moment, I was shown: Silver Hawk, Banana Kush, and Pineapple Express from Yerba Buena; Blue Dream from Arnow Browne; Blueberry Kush from Noble Farms; and Obama Kush from Green Cross.  All of these flowers looked amazing and any of them should help make a good time great!


Western Oregon Dispensary Sherwood – This Medical only dispensary welcomes each new patient with a complimentary joint.  During my visit today it is a 0.5g Virgin Mary pre-roll.  They also have a special selling 4 1.3gram pre-rolls for $20, which you can mix and match from a few strains.  This is an incredible deal for pre-rolls.  They also take plastic, using a third party named Linx which offers loadable debit cards which can be used to purchase cannabis products.  A nice convenience, even if it does charge $3 to load money on the card.  Western Oregon Dispensary also sells ounces of cannabis (Critical Mass or Mixed Green) for $99, and if you are interested in the Magical Butter machine, they will sell you one, with an ounce of cannabis, for $200.  I also found Sandy River OG BHO for $32 a gram.


Thursday, 5/25/17, 6.7 miles.

I visited Serra on SE Belmont for their 1 year anniversary.  The folks from Level are there to promote their new flavored water, yummy!  I picked up some Corazon, that wonderful sativa dominate hybrid which tested at more than 19% CBD.  From SE Belmont I wander to Cravedog on North Tillamook to participate in the monthly Happy Hour sponsored in part by The Weed Blog.  I learn so much from the folks who participate in these social gatherings!  Now, if only I can remember all of these names.


Friday, 5/26/17, 7.7 miles.  

Today I take the MAX up through the Hollywood District to The Grass Shack on Broadway, just north of Halsey.  I hit it perfectly, during a lull in the flow of folks coming in to score one of the $5 disposable REL vape pens.  From here I wander west down Broadway, southwest down Sandy, and then west on Oregon Street to Home Grown Apothecary for a second $5 REL vape pen.  Even though these pens contain only 0.25g of extract, at $5 each they are a great deal!  I do love the magical look and feel of this wonderful dispensary.  It always feels magical when I walk up to it.  Leaving Home Grown Apothecary I wander south to the North West Cannabis Club where I can sit in comfort and pass the time while enjoying some fine Oregon flower and flower products.  Utilizing public transportation allows me to enjoy the fruits of this lifestyle while staying safe.


Saturday 5/27/17, 8.4 miles.  I choose not to perform my Dispensary Tour at times that I think dispensaries will be too busy with customers to spend time with me.  Since this is supposed to be another gorgeous day in the Pacific North West, I will spend the day people watching again in downtown Portland.  I disembark from the MAX at Goose Hollow and walk to PSU to visit their Saturday Market, then take the Orange line to OMSI.  From there I wander aimlessly along the river, across the Steel Bridge, and more along the river.  When the heat rises I take the Orange line to the NWCC and again enjoy the comfort of the social club.




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Cannabis Season Week 8: Events and Dispensary Touring Continues 


June 19, 2017 

Cannabis Season – Week 8


This week includes the Veterans BBQ on Sunday and the Memorial Day Sesh on Monday, both being held at the NW Cannabis Club.  On Friday Ms. Jeni Wren is performing at Barrio on SE Foster, and Saturday finds me attending a social consumption dinner at a private residence, compliments of The Weed Blog.   

I also continue with my Dispensary Tour, this week wandering through eastern Beaverton and western Portland along the I5 corridor.  Here is how I walked 11.6 miles from Sunday May 28 through Saturday, June 3.


Sunday, 5/28/17, 1.0 miles.

The NW Cannabis Club is holding a BBQ today and all members who are also veterans get in for only a dollar today, so Flo and I are attending.  I see this as a wonderful way to introduce Flo to some of the folks I have gotten to know at the Club.  Alas, either something I ate, drank, or smoked turned a fun day into a miserable one; we had to leave before the festivities got under way.  The rest of my day finds me ill and uncomfortable.


Monday, 5/29/17, 0.2 miles.

I am going nowhere.  Whatever started me down this path yesterday still has a firm grip on my psyche.  No Memorial Day Sesh at the NWCC for me.  



Tuesday, 5/30/17, 0.7 miles.

 Ditto from yesterday.  It’s not that I can’t do things, I just don’t want to do anything.


Wednesday, 5/31/17, 0.5 miles.  

I need to pull myself out of this, but I don’t have the desire to expend the energy.


Thursday, 6/1/17, 0.2 miles.  

Nothing in the feel-good department for me today.  


It certainly is a good thing all around that I no longer have to deal with people when I am having days like this.  It is even a good thing for folks around me that they don’t have to deal with me on days like this.  It is a wonder that Flo puts up with me for a day; how (and why) she done it for 30 years beats the heck out of me.


Friday, 6/2/17, 1.6 miles.  

Finally!  I head to The New Amsterdam in NE Portland to take advantage of their advertised $5 REL vape pens.  Alas, between 10am when they opened and 10:38am when I arrived they had sold out.  Hmmm.  On to perform our monthly Costco and Target shopping, along with food shopping and automobile fuel filling at our local Safeway.  By two o’clock I am back home and Flo is up and about to help put away the bounty from another monthly shopping trip.  I am, however, too sore and scatter-brained to be a social consumer this evening, so I stay home rather than visit Jeni at the Barrio.  Hopefully I will get another chance to see her perform.


Saturday 6/3/17, 7.4 miles.  

Today I actually feel like getting out and about.  I head out before noon to do some downtown wandering before the Arcane Revelry social consumption dinner.  Since today is the Starlight Parade through downtown Portland, there are quite a large number of folks out and about so there is a lot to see and take in around town.  Just as I disembark from the Orange MAX line at the OMSI station, I receive a forwarded email regarding tonight’s festivities and realize that I need to return home to properly dress for this event, but I don’t have to go just yet.  So a wander north, down the East Esplanade, west across the Steel Bridge, and south up Tom McCall Waterfront Park allows me to see many sights at many sites before using public transportation to return home.  I opt for a black long sleeved dress shirt and a black and white 3 Stooges tie, brown Dickies pants, comfortable house slippers (100 year old original wood floors!), and of course my signature red hat.  I have plenty of time to get back into Portland, take the MAX up to PSU, and wander down through the Park Blocks before arriving at the beautiful old home of our host.


The Arcane Revelry event was amazing, and you can read more about it in a future article.  At the end of the event, I made the MAX with no issue, but after all the proper good-byes and hugs, it was too late for the MAX to make the connecting bus, so the lovely Flo consented to leaving the wonderful confines of home to meet my cannabis infused self at the light rail stop and drive me home.  What a great wife I have; what a great life I lead.



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