In the midst of heavy snowfall, Aspen hosted the inaugural Cannabis Grand Cru. Blue Sugar Productions, best known for the Winter X Games, brought the show to the high altitude town. This event was intended to be set apart and was an offering unlike a marijuana trade show because it was focused on networking and business seminars rather than products.
The Grand Cru was held at the Sky Hotel, which sold out with room bookings reserved exclusively for this unique weekend. With a lofty ticket price of $250, attendees were mainly those that are in the industry. Included in the price, though, was music at the infamous Belly Up Club along with coupons for dinner and brunch at Jimmy’s Bodega, both local favorites.
The Saturday seminars covered topics such as brand building, the legal landscape, Wall Street and financing, hydrocarbonate extractions, topicals, oils and edibles, a cooking demonstration and more. Fourteen classes in all ran throughout the day.
Dr. Daniella Vergara and Dr. Nollan Kane provided one of the most interesting presentations. To a riveted audience, they passionately explained cannabis genetics and how markers could identify cannabis compounds within individual strains. As the library of cannabis genetics increases, so will the database of information for improving strains. With this precise plant DNA information methods for reproduction can ultimately achieve exactly the strain combinations desired, thus eliminating costly methods of trial and error.
Other presenters included, John Hunt of The Grimey Gatsby & Cannabis Industry Maven, Ryan Abernathy Co- founder of X-tracted, Meg Collins of the Cannabis Alliance, and Sohum J. Shah COO of The Cannabis Commodities Exchange.
While there had been a local rumors grumbling that this event might bring unwanted publicity with overzealous partiers, it instead, proved again that marijuana use does not incite rowdy behavior. The Grand Cru was definitely a fun-filled weekend with the entire hotel offering a private haven for smiling attendees.
Grand Cru organizers are hopeful that educational events, such as the one held in Aspen, will effectively lead marijuana into the promising future. The old stigma of the counter culture is haunting, making progress a hard sell at times. Many within the cannabis industry understand that research areas of science and medicine, financing and business must be presented in the light of a separate more professional culture.
Have you ever attended a cannabis conference or event? Tell us about it in the comments.