Preparation for this weekend’s inaugural National Cannabis Conference in Victoria are going pretty much like any other convention, according to Bradley Sawyer.
“It’s going to be a busy week here, we’re just trying to get the last few things tidied up and making sure everything’s ready to go for Friday,” says Sawyer, a Victoria resident and founder of this event, which gets underway not accidentally on April 20 – 4/20 to those in the know about all things marijuana.
Crystal Garden is the host venue for the two-day event, which is part meet-and-greet, part trade show and educational opportunity. Friday afternoon offers a cocktail reception and sneak peek of the trade show for VIPs and sponsors, who will be able to mingle and talk business with exhibitors and investors. A 4/20 party winds up the evening, with music and a cash bar.
Saturday’s activities, to be officially opened by Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps, include a trade show where visitors can discover what local merchants have to offer. The day also features a series of workshops, including those specifically aimed at retailers of cannabis products and others offering general information about legislation updates, rules and regulations and more.
“I think the conference is really a way for those in the industry to garner some insights and information they might not have known,” says Sawyer. “But it’s also helping the public as we transition from where we are now into this legal marketplace, a place where people can learn more about cannabis as a plant, as well as about the industry.”
Part of the goal of the weekend will be to make inroads in removing the stigma around cannabis, he adds, in advance of federal legalization this year. Another will be to clear up some of the uncertainties around the current pre-legalization grey area.
As for who he expects will attend the events, it’ll be a combination of those already in the industry, people who are interested in getting involved as investors and the general public who want to find out more about upcoming legislation and what kinds of products might be available to them.
The trade show begins at 9 a.m and continues until 5 p.m. Full access advance tickets for the trade show and workshops cost $15, and are $20 at the door. To find out more about the conference, other passes and a list of workshop descriptions, visit nationalcannabisconference.ca.