The Hashery Dispensary had a soft opening Friday and a Grand Opening Saturday in Hackensack, while Baked by the River Dispensary had a Grand Opening in Lambertville.
There are now about 67 adult use New Jersey Cannabis dispensaries open. After a delay of years, the pace has increased to about two or three openings every 11 days.
Hashery Dispensary Opens
Hashery Dispensary had a soft opening Friday in Hackensack in Bergen County to prepare for a Grand Opening the following day.
They are among the first three New Jersey cannabis dispensaries with a drive-thru to open, along with the Camden Apothecary. The nearby Multi-State Operator (MSO) cannabis corporation Apothecarium in Lodi also has one. It’s near the Satin Dolls strip club, which was the Bada Bing in the hit show The Sopranos.
“They’re going to be turning around a battleship, and we’ll be turning on a dime,” Lead budtender Patrick Hogan declared regarding MSOs.
The Hashery Dispensary is among the dispensaries selling the new cannabis cartridge from independent maker Lily Extracts based in North Jersey. They are eager to sell similar products.
“We can’t even get the things we want to represent us,” Hashery Vice President Len Coleman III lamented.
It is a fairly large dispensary. He noted they have 12 kiosks and extensive display cases.
Hashery Dispensary sought to emphasize its roots in the cannabis community and down-to-earth nature.
“We’re not corporate. We’re not cutthroat,” Coleman declared.
Like many opening cannabis dispensaries in New Jersey, they have been dealing with technical issues like buggy software.
The Long Road to Opening a New Jersey Cannabis Dispensary
It has been a tumultuous process to open Hashery Dispensary.
“A week ago, I didn’t even know this would be a business,” Coleman admitted.
He lives in Basking Ridge in Somerset County. The NJ-CRC initially awarded Coleman the license under the name Wellness for Sale LLC. They approved the name change to Hashery at their December meeting. Wellness for Sale won a conversion to an annual New Jersey cannabis dispensary license necessary to open at their October meeting.
Coleman thought Hashery was a unique name since they were trying to create a fun atmosphere at the place. They had unique offerings on the shelves.
The company also likes cannabis hash, concentrate products and plans to feature many of them.
Coleman is the son of former President of the National Baseball League. Len Coleman Jr. Coleman Jr. was previously in the cabinet of former Republican New Jersey Governor Tom Kean. His father took some time to get on board but supports it now. Coleman III is African American. He explained he previously worked in estate planning and insurance.
NJ Dispensary Background
Sam Jurist is the President of Hashery Dispensary. He grew up in Mendham in Morris County. Coleman said Jurist owns the ancillary brand Focus V which they are selling as well. Jurist also owns a California cannabis manufacturer license for Rosin Tech Labs. Coleman explained Jurist had been living there for some time. SHO Products (Solventless Hash Oil) is the holding company.
Jurist approached Coleman about getting into cannabis five years ago. They were friends and roommates in Hoboken.
“I thought about bowing out several times,” Coleman noted.
Access to capital was difficult for them as it is for many in cannabis (including Heady NJ). However, they were able to raise money through friends, family, and loans.
“This is completely funded by people from New Jersey,” Coleman declared. “I really want them to do well. They gave us financial backing four years ago. People trusted in us. We want to reward their faith.”
“We’re kind of like the mold they were going for,” he argued.
Coleman is a supporter of Minorities for Medical Marijuana (M4MM) and attended their Atlantic City forum in November.
Baked By the River Dispensary Holds Grand Opening in Lambertville
The Baked By The River Dispensary held a grand opening in Lambertville in Hunterdon County.
They made it a party with a DJ, a drag queen, and a glass-blowing demonstration around the corner in the back.
“We are so incredibly grateful for the opportunity to go (underground) legacy to legal here in the Garden State. It is truly a dream come true,” Baked By The River Owner and CEO Jesse Marie Villars declared in an Instagram video filmed by Rec House Dispensary.
She added they are grateful for the community.
“Getting to this place has taken years. We’ve overcome so many different hurdles. I was pretty anxious. Once we got to opening day, it felt right. There’s so much support from our local community,” she explained. “It really feels like what we were meant to do.”
It has been a long journey for everyone that has been exhausting for many in the New Jersey cannabis industry.
Jersey Cannabis Progress
They are working with Bloc, formerly Justice Grown, to secure legal New Jersey cannabis products like their “Crops” product line.
Co-owner Cord Schlobohm praised their product for its freshness. He emphasized they want to work with smaller cannabis growers. Unfortunately, no products from an exclusively adult use New Jersey cannabis cultivator have hit the shelves yet.
Baked By The River Dispensary has one of the warmest atmospheres of all the New Jersey cannabis dispensaries. It looks like a Victorian-era salon. They were able to find a lot of good secondhand furniture for the waiting room.
Only Elevated by Cannaboss Lady is similarly warmly decorated, filled with color, and adorned with fine wood. They are both micro dispensaries owned and operated by women.
It was almost like a bank or a nightclub with a bouncer controlling the line. The place was formerly a firehouse that burnt down and was abandoned for 20 years. The place features local artists.
After years of waiting, a robust crowd was eager to enter. Many New Jersey cannabis businesspeople and professionals like underground legacy to legal cannabis entrepreneur Debi Maidao, Penni Wild of the NJBAC, Jack Palis, accountant Stacey Udell, Dirty Dank, Sam Padro of Verano, Jake Pennelli of the UFCW, Jeff Booker of Canna Coverage, and Amanda Terpstra of Best Buds dispensary were there for the opening day.
Notably, several home grow stickers were around the place from the Coalition for Medical Marijuana for New Jersey (CMMNJ).
Baked By the River had been building to this moment for years.