Three other Great Barrington pot shops close to opening

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GREAT BARRINGTON — Theory Wellness might be the first to make retail marijuana sales in Berkshire County. But three more stores set to open in Great Barrington might not be far behind, depending on state and local approvals.

Highminded LLC could be next. The "luxury cannabis brand" shop founded by Alexander Farnsworth and his partner, fashion designer Adam Lippes, is slated for a spring opening at the north end of Main Street.

Highminded and two other shops are all in various stages of approval. Calyx Berkshire Dispensary has local approvals for its Main Street operation, and as of mid-December was ready to apply for its license from the state Cannabis Control Commission. Calyx President Donna Norman could not be reached to confirm the company's timeline. Norman has hired local designer William Caligari to transform the Main Street storefront.

Commonwealth Cultivation LLC has settled on an upper Railroad Street location, but CEO Brian Vincent could not be reached to confirm the company's status or timeline for opening. The company has a provision cultivation license from the state for an operation in Pittsfield.

Farnsworth, all bundled up Friday outside the Theory opening, said he and Lippes decided to change Highminded's location from Main Street's former United Methodist Church, currently under renovation, to 126 Main St. The new location is a freestanding building at the north of downtown with more parking. He said while he supports the owner of the church, the company needed its own building to sell the "luxury cannabis brand" over the long-term.

The move of address will require Select Board approval.

"It's come down to a business decision to execute the vision for the brand," Farnsworth said. "It's not the prettiest building, but what we have planned will make it pretty."

For a renovation, the company has hired Aldridge Atelier Architects, a New York, London and Connecticut-based firm, and Farnsworth is about to release the designs.

Heather Bellow can be reached at hbellow@berkshireeagle.com or on Twitter @BE_hbellow and 413-329-6871

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