The 1st Annual CT Cannabis Conference

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A packed house for the opening keynote speakers.

It was a packed house for the 1st annual CT Cannabis Convention in New Haven CT. People came from all parts to either drop some knowledge, display their wares, or learn about the benefits of Cannabis. It was the first meeting of its kind in the state, and judging by the turn out it is an eloquent look at the potential future of the state’s cannabis community.

The event was orchestrated by Eve Marie Santana of High Beautiful and The Cannabis Consultants of CT which consists of Joe LaChance, Kebra Smith-Bolden and Luis Angel Vega. These organizers wanted to create an environment where like minded people could come together and have discussions about the future of an industry that many want to be a part of. And it was a day packed with experiences…

From 12:00pm until 2:00pm there was a “Leadership Lunch” which was pretty much breathing room only. Warm welcomes were extended and a summary of what was to come was being displayed. This was also the forum for the keynote speakers Jonathan Harris, Shanel Lindsay, and Dasheeda Dawson. Jonathan Harris spoke about his tenure as commissioner of the DCP and the history of the Medical Marijuana program in CT. Shanel Lindsay discussed experiences with working with the Cannabis Control Commission in MA. And Dasheeda Dawson shared her experiences and issues she faced as an entrepreneur in a predominately white male industry. All of the speeches were very moving and inspiring stories. Yet all the stories displayed the work that is still ahead in order to create a fair and equitable Cannabis Industry. Oh… And the food was good too.

Along the way from 2:00pm until 4:00pm there were multiple workshops for attendees to participate in. A variety of learning experiences to choose from ranging from legal considerations for cannabusiness startups to team building. There were also forums on building your brand and pitching your product.

In addition to discussions during the conference, the expo ran until 6:00pm.  Not only did the expo run until the very end of the conference, it stayed packed the entire time. Vendors and consultants galore! Throughout the expo numerous things could be found ranging from Decarboxylators and Vaporizers to grow equipment and microdosing masterpieces. There where pharmacist speakers (listeners too), along with tables full of activism. Even Direct TV had a table there…  Some of these guys came from as far as Las Vegas to be part of this first annual conference. I think that shows a little excitement in the air.

During the event I had a chance to sit down and speak with Joe Lachance of The Cannabis Consultants of CT, one of the coordinators of the event, to get some feedback on the turn out of the event. “The event exceeded our expectations, it was a great showcase for the CT Cannabis Community and really proved the support for Cannabis in CT” said Lachance.

The event had enormous support right out of the gate and will only get continuously larger every year.  I think that this also shows the large support factor that already exists for this industry and the industries that form around it within the state of CT. Many want to see this industry grow, in some cases quite literally.

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