To dab and hold from this day forward
As I noted last week in recounting the diverse assortment of vendors, from sellers of major grow equipment to glass retailers, who took tables at the recent New England Cannabis Convention in Boston, it is only a matter of time before any number of cottage industries spawn their own tangential large affairs. We’re already seeing meetups along topic lines ranging from the canna-business side of things to home grow tactics, and it’s inevitable that most of those pockets will continue to attract participants.
While it’s hard for us East Coasters to concede that we’re behind on anything, it is a fact that places such as Denver, Washington, and California are ahead of us in this arena. From experience with enormous-scale cultivation, to all kinds of market-testing of the kinds of new pot technologies that we will see a lot more of around here very soon, these places at the very least serve as a loose predictor of our future market. And so following a journalism convention I attended out in Berkeley last week, I did some straight-up marijuana tourism, including a trip to the Cannabis Wedding Expo in San Francisco last Sunday.
I’m not sure what kind of image you have in your head about such a seemingly niche happening, but I’d envisioned something slightly smaller than the serious event with several dozen vendors that it was. Held at Bespoke, a coworking space that felt more like a mess hall on the Death Star than a place of business, the expo certainly attracted a couple of companies that would belong at your average bridal showcase—transportation, videographers, officiants, etc.—but to my surprise there were also more than a few cannabis-minded outfits that jibe quite nicely and naturally with the wedding industrial complex.
First there are the obvious ones, and the San Fran exposition featured no shortage of weed cooks and bakers who can turn your favorite matrimonial delights into delicious edibles. In a different vein and with a standout presentation was the crew from My Bud Vase, which transforms antique and just plain old vases into, you guessed it, working bongs. I have never been too interested in marriage myself, but the thought of my great aunt pulling a tube out of a flower pot at the dinner table has me wondering if I should go and propose to my partner.
Other awesomeness included: Top Shelf Budtending, which is a service even more amazing than it sounds (check the DigBoston Facebook page for a video interview with that Colorado-based company); AnnaBis, which designs and manufactures odor-proof accessories and handbags; two different monthly subscription services, which also create handy toke boxes for bridesmaids and groomsmen; and my personal favorite, infused cotton candy. The latter’s samples at the expo were of the virginal variety, but considering all of the delicious eats that we encountered out in Cali—we can’t wait for our friends from GOOD CO-OP to bring their exquisite salty treats our way—I have the impression that most weeded couples and their guests will be impressed.
As for Cali canna culture on the whole … while it’s been easier to get amazing trees, extracts, and edibles out there for forever due to remarkably lax medical laws, the truth is that having just passed recreational last year, like Mass, the state is still the wild west in many ways. They have a cannabis wedding show, sure, but give us six months and I have faith that Boston can catch up.
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A Queens, NY native who came to New England in 2004 to earn his MA in journalism at Boston University, Chris Faraone is the editor and co-publisher of DigBoston and a co-founder of the Boston Institute for Nonprofit Journalism. He has published several books including 99 Nights with the 99 Percent, and has written liner notes for hip-hop gods including Cypress Hill, Pete Rock, Nas, and various members of the Wu-Tang Clan.