Full disclosure: As a chief sponsoring media entity, we’re hardly objective on these matters, and are jumping-out-of-our-skin excited about the coming New England Cannabis Convention. There will be other marijuana summits, no doubt, but to show that NECC planners walk the walk, we thought we’d brag about which of our distinguished friends will tread the green carpet …
On Saturday, February 21, NECC will start with a discussion held by Mickey Martin of the Northeastern Institute of Cannabis (NIC). It’s called “Cultivation for Patients and Caregivers in Massachusetts,” and it’s for anybody motivated to medicate outside of the costly dispensary system. (The same crowd will also want to drop in on Dorian Des Lauriers of ProVerde Labs and Addison DeMoura of Steep Hill Labs, who are teaming up the following day to lecture on quality and specialty strains).
Saturday afternoon, DigBoston News Editor Chris Faraone will moderate a panel with pro-pot Maine State Rep. Diane Russell, Jill Hitchman-Osborn of Seizing Hope, and Chris Goldstein of PhillyNORML and Freedom Leaf Magazine. They’ll touch on lawmaking procedures and policy, and hopefully take digs at prohibitionist goons and fraudulent pols. That’s all followed by a keynote from Becky DeKeuster, director of community and education at Wellness Connection of Maine. Plus an EOD panel on medicinal use with Mike Cann and a cast of contemporary cannabis all-stars.
Sunday starts off tastefully with a “Cooking with Cannabis” event, for which some of the region’s finest marijuana chefs have been recruited. Moving forward, catch a bombshell panel on politics with Cann and activists from Pennsylvania (N.A. Poe) and Mass (Cara Crabb-Burnham of MassCann/NORML, Nicole Snow of Mass Patient Advocacy Alliance). Poe ran for City Council in Philly and wound up helping loosen penalties for pot; anybody who aspires to be some kind of gadfly will want to take notes. As for more serious attendees, Shaleen Title of THC Staffing Group will be on hand recruiting for industry jobs. Don’t take it lightly when we say to get to her panel early. It’s going to be packed.
Before wandering back out into the world, you’ll also get some time with members of the Mass Patient Advocacy Alliance; in addition to explaining the importance of activism in terms that are relatable to everyday Americans, they’ll break down everything you need to know about commonwealth cannabis laws. Because while the Bay State is finally mature enough to let an event like the NECC happen, there’s still a lot we need to do together to move forward. Our work continues at the Castle in three weeks.