COLLINSVILLE, OK (KJRH) — As dispensaries celebrate one year since State Question 788 was passed, some owners look back at the fight they had to put up to be the first dispensaries in their small towns.
Owners say for a while, it wasn’t easy to open up a dispensary in a small town. As the industry has grown, though, so has the acceptance of their store fronts.
In just one year, the medical marijuana industry in Oklahoma has expanded more than nearly anyone could have expected. According to the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority, there are more than 146 thousand medical marijuana patients in the state; that’s more than 3.7 percent of the state’s total population.
According to medical marijuana policymakers, that’s also a higher percentage of patients than there were in any other state when 788 passed in 2018.
“This industry is changing every day," said Brad Peixotto, "and perceptions are changing with it.”
Peixotto owns World of Weed in Collinsville, which opened in January 2019. He says they were met with some backlash from the city - people who lived in the town along with businesses that had reservations. After almost missing opening day, they were able to open up without any issue, and Peixotto says in six months the store has grown more than he ever thought possible.
"As far as the dispensary goes, I’m glad we are in this community," Peixotto said. "I’ve always felt like I’ve been part of the fabric of this community, but now even more so. I relish the fact that we are an accepted part of Collinsville. We are Collinsville.”
Businesses around World of Weed are thankful for the people the dispensary is bringing to town.
“It helps a lot, because we get exposure from traffic coming in,” said Lanette Cornett, who works as a hair stylist at Too Blonde Salon across the street. “I think it’s needed, I think it’s needed for the economy, and it’s clearly needed for what it’s used for - medical marijuana.”
Cornett says there's a flow of people coming and going every day of the week. They come from as far as Oklahoma City, and are a welcome sight for shops that might not otherwise get such wide-reaching publicity.
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