A soirée held by Colorado's cannabis industry will put the words "ganja" and "gala" together in rare form on Thursday, October 17.
Hosted by Mason Jar Event Group, Irie Weddings and Cannabis Doing Good, "A Night at the Cabaret" is a pot-friendly award ceremony recognizing cannabis companies that give back to their respective communities. According to event organizers, awards are given out for social responsibility and community participation, whether that be donations, volunteer work or business practices.
Proceeds from the event will be donated to Planned Parenthood of the Rockies, an organization that aligns with other causes the cannabis industry has worked with in the past, according to Lisa Farrimond-Gee, director of marketing and cannabis social responsibility at Lightshade, a Denver-based dispensary chain.
“Both groups are about getting the government out of the way of personal choices and believe people have the right to make personal choices,” she says. “The cannabis industry is about the choice of whether this is a medical drug you want to use or a recreational drug you want to use.”
Farrimond-Gee explains that her company wanted to benefit Planned Parenthood because it aligns with some of Lightshade’s missions, such as homelessness. “Many of those who are homeless only have access to family planning through Planned Parenthood, so it’s important that the organization is around to help,” she adds.
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Creating an atmosphere that promotes charity and social responsibility could help cannabis companies spread their wings into new communities as more Americans begin to accept legal cannabis. Peter Marcus, communications director at dispensary chain Terrapin Care Station, says it's important for cannabis companies to build integrity in public communities they move into.
“When cannabis companies build roots, they build goodwill with the public, and the community embraces them as a local business,” he explains. “We want feedback from the community, and encourage nonprofits to reach out to us.”
Lightshade, a sponsor of the event, will provide cannabis products to attendees that are intended to pair with certain dishes and moments throughout the night. Because of current state laws banning cannabis sales and giveaways at social consumption events, Lightshade will provide attendees with products at its Federal Heights store before the gala begins.
Entertainment at the gala includes live performances from Circus Collective and Ignite Entertainment, as well as catering from chefs Daniel Asher and Kevin Grossi. The gala (21+) will be held Thursday, October 17, from 7 to 11 p.m. at a private Broomfield location. To request an invitation, email firstname.lastname@example.org.