Recreational cannabis rollout in Berkshire County set for Friday

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GREAT BARRINGTON — Theory Wellness plans to begin selling recreational cannabis this weekend, and a company leader offered these words of caution: "dress for the elements."

"There may be a bit of a line," said Theory CEO Brandon Pollock.

Pollock said the Great Barrington shop will open its doors to everyone 21 and older beginning at 10 a.m. Friday. Theory will be the first in the county to do so, though Temescal Wellness in Pittsfield shouldn't be far behind.

On Monday, an emailed "commence operations" certificate from the state's Cannabis Control Commission triggered a three-day countdown until Theory is legally allowed to begin recreational sales, Pollock said.

"We've been preparing, so we're ready to open any day now," Pollock said.

Julia Germaine, corporate development director for Temescal Wellness, said her company has been approved but is still waiting on the certificate. Both Theory and Temescal received final licenses from the state on Dec. 13.

Pollock said that over the next few days, his staff will undergo additional training and conduct final system checks. He said he's also asking them to rest up in anticipation of busy days ahead.

Theory's website points customers to a large parking lot behind Barrington Brewery, as well as parking immediately surrounding the Stockbridge Road business. Pollock said he's paying two police officers to direct traffic during business hours for at least the first week.

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The Great Barrington shop will be open seven days a week, he said, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. He said customers can expect purchase limits.

"There will be some limits, but they're fairly generous compared to some of the other dispensaries in the state," he said.

Dispensaries have resorted to purchase limits as a way to ensure they can distribute supply evenly and ensure products will remain available to consumers with medical cards. According to Theory's website, customers will be able to buy up to a half ounce of marijuana and one item each from the following categories: pre-rolled joints, cannabis concentrates, vaporizer cartridges, edibles and infusions.

Pollock said Theory won't offer online preorders this weekend.

"But it's something we'll implement pretty quickly," he said. "I'll tell people to stay tuned for that."

Pollock said there's a lot of excitement within the company.

"It's great that we're finally able to open and provide access for adults in the Berkshires," he said. "And we look forward to Friday."

Amanda Drane can be contacted at adrane@berkshireeagle.com, @amandadrane on Twitter, and 413-496-6296.


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