It was not your traditional ribbon cutting Wednesday morning at Essence Pasadena. New businesses who join the chambers of commerce traditionally get a ribbon cutting ceremony complete with local dignitaries on hand to say a few words. But having a relatively new kind of business in Pasadena — after going through red-tape, permits etc. — Essence managed to open one of the swankiest joints to sell cannabis in the city of Pasadena.
While members of City Council were notably absent, Paul Little, Pasadena Chamber of Commerce CEO, managed to keep the party going by introducing Essence to the local business community.
The journey hasn’t been easy for those who consume and or sell medicinal marijuana. The regulations and barriers facing potential dispensaries are mindboggling as well as financially draining. So, at this opening ceremony on Wednesday, the owners of Essence invited those with firsthand knowledge of the laws and how perception of the products they sell are slowly changing.
On hand to help the owners celebrate were people who have been at the forefront of Los Angeles’ movement to legitimize medical marijuana and move the legislature toward legalization including the Legal Aid Society; Jesse Aguiar, director of Beyond Foster Care at Journey House; Donielle DeLeon, director of corporate and community engagement at Homes 4 Families; Stacey Chiang, Homes 4 Families grant writer and community development associate; Ian Rassman, executive director and president at LA NORML; and Stephanie Uy, deputy director of government affairs at LA NORML.
Replete with the ever-present giant scissors —that generally do not actually work for the task at hand and are merely a prop for the cameras — owners and friends of the business posed for photos to mark the occasion.
Essence Pasadena is an upscale recreational cannabis dispensary that offers a range of “premium” cannabis products, including flower, vapes, edibles, concentrates, topicals, and more.
The store prides itself on “providing our guests with exceptional service,” according to its website. “A highly knowledgeable team is always there to help if you need a customized product recommendation or if you have any questions about cannabis. Whether you’re a first-time shopper that’s looking for an introduction to cannabis or a cannabis connoisseur that’s interested in discovering more…”
Essence is located at 908 E. Colorado Blvd. in Pasadena.