A cannabis bar from Cannabis Concierge Events at a recent wedding. Photo courtesy #CannabisConciergeEvents.
Recreational marijuana use is already legal in four states, and backers are pushing for it in even more. For example, California will have Prop. 64 on the ballot in November, a measure that has $2.5 million in backing from former Facebook president Sean Parker alone.
As more college students smoke marijuana than smoke cigarettes, according to statistics from the University of Michigan, the role that cannabis plays in events will continue to grow.
In true entrepreneur style, Bec Koop brought Colorado cannabis providers and social clients together in 2014 with the founding of Cannabis Concierge Events. Her company provides a wide range of services for weddings and other social events, including sourcing hemp invitations and clothing, setting up dispensary tours, arranging for "smoke ride" limos, booking cannabis-friendly venues, and turning client-purchased weed into party favors. For true buds of the bud, Koop will design and order ice bong sculptures and custom glass pipes.
A sister company—Buds and Blossoms—takes client-purchased plants and incorporates them into wedding floral, "making them beautiful and easily enjoyed during or after their celebration," as the company explains.
Here, Koop shares her insights into the world of weed at special events:
Special Events: We have heard several event planners from states where recreational cannabis is illegal say that when they hold events in “legal” states, their attendees are eager to sample cannabis there—do you find this to be true?
Bec Koop: Yes, this is very, very common. Many people are interested to try cannabis in a safe and regulated setting. These events with the right circumstances can provide this opportunity for their guests while also educating them and assisting with moderation so that a guest does not over-consume and ruin their evening.
Many people say it's like YOLO--You Only Live Once--or "When in Rome ..."
We have had people of all ages interested in trying cannabis at these events, and the best thing we can do is educate them, then provide them with an ideal and comfortable experience.
SE: Does this tend to be a function of age--that is, younger vs. older are more eager to try it?
BK: Typically, based on how experimental the "millennial generation" is, many of them have already tried cannabis and they are more interested in the other ways it can be consumed--i.e., edibles, tinctures, different devices, etc.--rather than having a first-time experience.
We have seen it to be more common with the older generations to be willing to try cannabis for the first time under these safe and comfortable settings. They typically prefer to vaporize or try a "taster" (one-hitter pipe) with just a very small amount of cannabis to start.
SE: We also hear that edibles seem to be a popular “let’s try it!” option—is this true?
BK: Very often this is the case, but this is where without proper moderation, it can catch up with the patrons very easy and should 100 percent be regulated.
At any Cannabis Concierge Events' wedding or special event, we provide regulation by serving the edibles and providing information about the dosing, duration and expected sensations that will come this that chosen edible. This prevents the opportunity to overload or over-consume when it is regulated.
We will never, under any circumstance set up edibles on a buffet, because that is where you can set up your event patrons for a poor experience as well as the venue staff, CCE staff and other patrons if it gets out of control.
SE: Do some events bring out the “cannabis connoisseurs” more than others?
BK: Weddings definitely bring out some "cannabis connoisseurs" but so do events where majority of the guests work in the cannabis industry.
Retreats and more relaxing events tend to bring out more of the relaxed connoisseurs and they typically tend to BYOC [bring your own cannabis] because they might prefer a very specific strain for their upcoming event to get them in the mood. Whereas at a wedding or event, patrons tend to be a bit more in the party and enjoy-whatever-is-given-to-them mood!
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