Open house festivities for new marijuana dispensary

 
 
Updated 12/12/2015 5:28 PM
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  • Richard Harris of Addison, left, speaks with Kevin Sink of Revolution Cannabis at an open house for the Greenhouse Medical Cannabis Dispensary in Deerfield on Saturday.

      Richard Harris of Addison, left, speaks with Kevin Sink of Revolution Cannabis at an open house for the Greenhouse Medical Cannabis Dispensary in Deerfield on Saturday. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • State Representative Elaine Nekritz, left, of the 57th District talks with Cat Stewart of Cresco Labs at an open house for the Greenhouse Medical Cannabis Dispensary in Deerfield on Saturday.

      State Representative Elaine Nekritz, left, of the 57th District talks with Cat Stewart of Cresco Labs at an open house for the Greenhouse Medical Cannabis Dispensary in Deerfield on Saturday. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

Deerfield's Greenhouse Medical Cannabis Dispensary mixed business with fun in its public debut Saturday.

It was the lone opportunity for anyone without a state-issued medical marijuana registry identification card to visit Greenhouse, deep in a Pfingsten Road office park on the border of Lake and Cook counties.

Refreshments, raffle prizes and other businesses such as holistic fitness were part of Greenhouse's festivities, which drew a steady stream of visitors. Greenhouse features a warm, dark-wood interior in a spalike setting.

Among Saturday's guests was Rebecca Thompson of Addison, who waited for her boyfriend as he collected information from Revolution Cannabis Co. The company produces a variety of strains including Revolution Blue Cheese, which is said to relieve pain and stress while acting as an appetite and mental stimulant.

Thompson, who doesn't have a medical marijuana permit, said she supports the industry.

"I've experienced Big Pharma," she said. "I've experienced all their different chemicals. And it made my life much, much worse."

Greenhouse CEO Mitch Kahn said anyone without the proper medical marijuana ID can't be allowed inside after a final state inspection Monday. He said the open house was a chance to show everyone Greenhouse will be "a different kind of facility" with yoga, massage and other alternative medicine services available.

"It's the whole person, as opposed to just coming into a pharmacy, get your medicine and leave," Kahn said.

Greenhouse is expected to start selling the marijuana products in January and will join at least 16 licensed dispensaries operating in Illinois. State records show the facilities are in suburbs including Mundelein, Schaumburg, Addison, North Aurora and Mount Prospect.

Legal marijuana sales started in Illinois on Nov. 9. While Gov. Bruce Rauner has vetoed legislation that would extend the test program past its current 2-year limit, a new plan could be negotiated.

State Rep. Elaine Nekritz, a Northbrook Democrat, was part of the Greenhouse crowd Saturday.

"I'm not sure I knew what one of these (facilities) was going to look like, so I had no preconceived notions," Nekritz said in front of the Cresco Labs display in the rear of Greenhouse. Cresco is a medical cannabis cultivator and processor. "It looks like a great facility."

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