The city of Kenmore has its first – and only – recreational marijuana store, Theorem, and it’s all about cannabis customer service.
“The people in Washington voted to have recreational marijuana and we wanted to make sure, in Kenmore, we had ours away from churches, schools, day care, bus stops [and] from residential,” said Kenmore Mayor David Baker. “When this whole thing got legalized… 60 percent of Kenmore voters voted to allow the legalization of marijuana – the majority of our voters.”
Ken Jones, the proprietor of Theorem, is mostly concerned with making the recreational marijuana retail experience as much of a normal experience as possible with products that are top notch, while minimizing the negative drawbacks to venues that cater to mind-altering libations.
“It’s been long anticipated, it took about a year… so we couldn’t be more excited to be open now. We want people to understand they can come in here and get quality products,” said Ken Jones, owner of Theorem recreational marijuana store. “Having a reputable perception by the community, I really want to take the ‘drug’ out of cannabis. People don’t perceive alcohol as a drug, even though it is, it needs to be understood that [marijuana is] a libation.”
The store has a clean interior, with lots of white and lots of green, including vaporizing products, edibles, tinctures and, of course, leafy nugs of marijuana.
For others in the community, they’re already happy that Theorem is open for business.
“I can’t find a place just to go with my ID and I don’t have a medical card. I don’t need one ‘cause I’m a smoker… every day, as I wake up, afternoon, every day I smoke,” said Luburi Lambey, landscaper working outside of Theorem. “Having marijuana in the Kenmore area is going to make a whole lot of love come through here.”
For Jones, Theorem’s future isn’t just about the sale of recreational marijuana, he’s in the community for the long haul. Already, he’s renovated a blight along the south side of State Route 522 by fixing and painting the exterior and cleaning up the weeds blocking the view of Lake Washington.
“The demographics of what we’re seeing so far has been upper 20s to 50 [or] 60,” Jones said. “So, it’s very diverse.”
Theorem has also kept pot purchasers off the street, too. For Jones, it’s important that they only get the kind of clientele that are proper – no junkies and no minors.
However, during a recent routine inspection, a staff member at Theorem sold a gram of marijuana to an undercover minor with ID that stated the person was underage.
“That was a really bad day for us because our brand is [not] about what took place here,” Jones said. “We’ve put a number of measures in place… and we’ve met with the LCCB [Liquor and Cannabis Control Board].”
Jones worked with his board representation to ensure that the sale didn’t happen again. Since the incident, Jones has installed a new ID reader which verifies a licenses legality, has posted an employee at the door at a welcoming podium and has also initiated a rule that all persons who look under the age of 30 are carded again at purchase. Those who are worried about tracking IDs can use a secondary checkpoint, which includes a manager.
“This is a bad mark on our record and we’re embarrassed by it. I’ll tell you, trying to turn that into a positive – I’ve never seen a group more on-point [since],” Jones said.
Theorem has paid all fines in connection with the sale-to-minor incident.
It’s not just minors showing up at his doors that he has to worry about, either. Jones also has to contend with the kids, too, knowing its also about keeping pot out of the hands of minors at home.
“It’s a simple process, we won’t carry products that even look attractive to children. [Even] the beverages we will be bringing are going to be like pomegranate, adult beverages,” Jones said. “I won’t get into bubble gummy things, gummy bears. The last thing I would want to do is hear that someone bought a product here that looked like gummy bears and a child ate it.”
There are also future plans to host community information sessions where people learn about marijuana, such as ‘Explaining pot to my kids’ sessions, or just meet and greet with community members at the local pot shop.
“What we’re going to do is some community based programs promoting prevention of [use by] the youth. We’re going to be putting on seminars and culinary classes with loyalty club members, but one of the classes we want to put on… is ‘how do I deal with this and my children.’”
While there’s evidences that suggest that child-use of marijuana may impact their development, there’s not a lot of information about how parents can talk to children about their own or other adult pot use.
For more information, visit Theorem’s website www.theoremcannabis.com.