|Photo: Coaster420, Wikimedia Commons|
|Dispensary grade Purple Goo.|
Despite District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis’ recent dispensary crackdown, there are towns in the San Diego area that aren’t so pot-unfriendly. In Fallbrook, California, the newest member of the Chamber of Commerce is a medical marijuana dispensary.
Dispensary co-founder Bob Riedel said he joined the chamber for the regular reasopns: getting involved in the community and networking, according to the North County Times. The dispensary will even be one of the sponsors for Fallbrook’s Dec. 5 Christmas parade, having kicked $500 into the chamber’s parade fund.
“We wanted to get involved with the community and to let people know who we are,” Riedel said of applying for chamber membership. “We have an actual retail license. We are completely by the book.”
In an inspiring bit of clear thinking, chamber directors said there was no reason to deny membership to the marijuana cooperative. The board voted unanimously at its Nov. 3 meeting to grant the dispensary membership, according to Chamber Executive Director David Bergeson.
Membership requests aren’t normally voted on by the board — normally it’s just a matter of turning in an application and paying the annual fee. But the dispensary was seen as a special case, Bergeron told the Times.
“When the check and application came in, we all sat around with our mouths hanging open, like, ‘What do we do?'” Bergeson said. “It was the first time the chamber has ever been confronted with what could be considered a controversial applicant.”
“I don’t believe in it, but it’s like I didn’t believe in acupuncture until I found out it works,” Bergeson told the Times. “So I’m not the judge. We had no logical reason that we could come up with to reject their application.”
The North County Times says the decision appears to be unprecedented in North San Diego County. Chamber officials in Vista, Oceanside, Escondido and San Marcos told the paper they have no medical marijuana dispensaries as members.
The Mother Earth dispensary has nearly 600 members, 80 percent of them between the ages of 50 and 80. The cooperative does not advertise, and nobody under 21 is allowed inside.
According to Riedel, the chamber’s acceptance of his dispensary is just one more example of the tolerance Fallbrook offers newcomers. “Fallbrook is just an amazing town,” he said. “The people are warm, friendly, understanding. I think Fallbrook is a diamond in San Diego that nobody knows about.”