Main Street Marijuana prepares for opening
The folks at Main Street Marijuana, 2314 Main St. in uptown, were nice enough to let me visit the store this week to see how things are shaping up.
Everything’s still on schedule so far for them to become one of Vancouver’s first licensed marijuana stores on July 8, and Ramsey Hamide, one of the managers, said he will have some stock to sell on that date.
“We’ll have some, but we may have to limit customers to a few grams to an eighth (of an ounce) on opening day,” Hamide said.
The goal at the start will be to keep prices as low as possible, but with a shortage looming as stores prepare to open, it’s going to be tricky – at least for the first few weeks.
Hamide hopes to offset some of the prices to buyers by throwing in free pipes or other glassware, or at least selling paraphernalia at highly reduced costs.
The company got its storefront, a former jewelry shop, on May 6. Since then employees have been installing security equipment, ripping up old floors, painting, setting up computer systems and preparing display cases.
Hamide and other employees went to Colorado earlier this year to check out how various marijuana retail stores set up their spots and take notes.
They’re planning on using the multitude of jewelry display cases for marijuana strains, edibles and other products – possibly with information on each type so people can learn about them as they browse, Hamide said.
“We also want to have art from local artists on display, maybe glass blowers,” Hamide said. “We really want to work with local people and be the best neighbors we can.”
The store also has an ATM inside so folks can get cash without having to carry it around.
Video, security doors and other systems are ready to go. The computer network, flooring and several other projects remain, Hamide said.
“It’s really getting one hurdle done and then getting through the next,” he said, adding that he doesn’t anticipate any issues slowing the opening.
The store is also in the process of hiring a sales force, called “budtenders,” who will provide information and make sales to customers.
“We put an add on Craigslist (Wednesday) and we got over 100 applicants,” Hamide said. “We will probably have some open interviews. We need at least six for the front to ring up customers and answer questions. We want to have a really knowledgeable staff.”
I hear that New Vansterdam, which will be on the other side of town, is also finishing up some final checks. I hope to go out and visit with them soon, possibly in the next week.
How do you all feel about the impending openings? Are you excited? Worried? Interested in how-to-buy or other videos? Please let us know in the comments section!