Followup: West Seattle’s next medical-marijuana provider explains

Dozens of comments and questions ensued when we broke the news Monday that a medical-marijuana business is moving into the former Payday Loans space on the northeast corner of 35th/Roxbury. John Davis, owner of the forthcoming Northwest Patient Resource Center, told WSB contributor Deanie Schwarz that day that it will be a “facility,” not a “dispensary.” WSB’ers asked, what’s the difference? So that’s part of our followup:

Davis says he’s worked in the industry for about three years, and has “been working in cannabis law reform for almost 20 years.” He says there’s no formal training for what he prefers to call the “medical cannabis” industry, so that’s how he learned how to be “able to judge and properly help patients choose a type of cannabis.”

Back to “facility” vs. “dispensary.” Davis says he avoids the latter term since he believes it has “a bad name, really, from what’s going on down in California … (and it) isn’t really what we are trying to be. We are trying to be a resource to patients that have a need for medical cannabis but have medical conditions that can benefit from other resources.”

What kind of resources? “We want to have literature, a community bulletin board where groups can get together, people with similar conditions, referrals to doctors, that sort of thing.”

Unlike West Seattle’s newest two medical-marijuana outlets, Northwest Patient Resource Center will have outside signage, Davids says, but “we want to keep our signage nice and respectful for the community – we are not going to have big cannabis leaves or anything like that.”

Some commenters wondered why West Seattle needs (at least) three medical-marijuana outlets. “Firstly, in West Seattle, there are almost 50 pharmacies,” Davis retorted. “Three locations is not a lot of locations.” But without naming names or locations, he says, “I’ve seen a lot of emerging ‘canna-businesses’ … some of them, I like what they are doing, some, as a patient, I wouldn’t … What we think we’re doing is different. I think we’ll be fine.”

We asked about security, given that public-safety authorities have said medical-marijuana businesses can be targeted by thieves/robbers (and one in West Seattle was held up less than a month ago): “We will be the most secure facility in Western Washington, and that’s a good thing for many reasons. For one thing, police like to see that – they say, ‘OK, someone’s open, will it bring violence into the community?’ So if you don’t pay a mind to security, you’re going to have problems.”

Mindful of community concerns, he insisted, “You’re not going to feel threatened in your neighborhood. I know some people see us as invaders, but we’re just trying to do a business.”

We asked Davis if the medical-marijuana-business-regulation bill that’s now passed the state House and Senate, SB 5073, would change anything regarding his plans. He views it with optimism: “I see the bill as a great next step. Our industry needs some regulation – because some of the operations I’ve seen don’t have rules, so they make up their own. A little regulation is a great thing for the community.” He also foresees that it will be welcomed by law enforcement: “They want clarification, is this a legitimate business, or not a legitimate business? Helping clarify some of that is, I think, a good thing for all sides, including neighborhoods wondering, ‘what’s coming into my community?’.” He think it will help the medical-marijuana industry be “more medical.”

Some commenters wondered about the size of the storefront Davis is moving into. He says they are trying to plan ahead, be mindful of growth, since, he says, the new legislation will restrict the amount of outlets per county (he says he’s still reading the bill but believes it’s one per 20,000 residents, which would mean 96 allowable in King County). “We want to make sure we have enough transaction area so that we don’t have lines out the door.”

He’s hoping Northwest Patient Resource Center will be open within a month; he’s expecting to be open regular business-type hours, likely six days a week (probably closed on Sundays). He says he’s hoping to alleviate community concerns and has already “met several of the business owners” in the area. “We’re professionals. This is going to be a professional facility. We understand there are going to be neighborhood concerns; we aim to address them. I think once we open and people see who we are, they’re going to be much more comfortable.”

96 Replies to "Followup: West Seattle's next medical-marijuana provider explains"

  • w.s. maverick April 13, 2011 (5:48 pm)


  • John Smith April 13, 2011 (5:59 pm)

    Glad to see a payday loan business out of the neighborhood. Those types of businesses exploit the poor and uneducated.

  • danny April 13, 2011 (6:23 pm)

    to many already i don,t want my grand kids to have this sort of thing in or neighborhood. i am a victim of pot use and i belive it had a direct bearing on my develement and social skills,,, please lets not keep the cycle going put a end to pot and cigaretts. my west seattle has had enough. it will bring more outsiders who are used to violence! this is not the way it should be. if you smoke fine but don,t make me c it and endure all that it entails. you will c major dif in the community and the attitude of the peeps. i wish i could go back and change the way we all percive smoke in all its forms. stop this maddness

  • Mongo April 13, 2011 (6:31 pm)

    Well, as an Arbor Heights resident, I guess this is better than having the space just sit empty…

    I enjoy most aspects of living in Arbor Heights, but — let’s face it — this area is woefully underserved from a retail/services perspective. Given that, every sq. ft. of retail space in the area is precious. I see interesting development just a little farther around us — in areas such as downtown White Center and even, a little bit, on 35th with places such as Locol. However, closer in, all we seem to get are more convenience stores (whoopie, a 7-11 at 35th and Barton) and payday loan stores (the last use of this space).

    I kept hoping that this space would become something that really adds to the community — like a decent deli, casual restaurant (when I’m really dreaming, a decent Chinese restaurant) or cafe like Chaco Canyon in the junction — or some other more needed retail use. Another opportunity lost for the neighborhood…

  • Amanda April 13, 2011 (6:40 pm)

    So progressive! I really love living in Seattle – West Seattle in particular. Thanks for the details on the business. Good luck!

  • sa April 13, 2011 (6:40 pm)

    Again, I really hope they will sponsor the West Seattle Summer fest parade.

  • Concerned Neighbor April 13, 2011 (7:14 pm)


    The business is a “facility” and not a dispensary because of a community bulletin board?

    The phrase “lipstick on a pig” comes to mind.

  • wescatle April 13, 2011 (7:39 pm)

    to danny- I suspect that you are not who you claim to be- your use of vocabulary and spelling are a big clue to your “deception”- west seattle is a gem of Seattle and our awareness of current issues keeps us one notch ahead of Renton

  • JD April 13, 2011 (7:40 pm)

    There is definitely a need for medical cannibis for those in need. Good luck to this respectful new business.

  • Jeremiah April 13, 2011 (8:01 pm)

    I applaud this. Access to healthcare; in all its forms, betters our community.

  • Terry April 13, 2011 (8:04 pm)

    I think this is great. I am a 56 year old professional suffering from a serious and debilitating nerve disease. Cannabis helps me considerably to eat, control my nerves, and sleep. Thank you West Seattle for your progression and being open minded, now I will have a choice like any other business, and hoping I will never have to purchase black-market again.

  • Jim April 13, 2011 (8:20 pm)

    Marijuana is NOT legal here or anywhere else in the country. California passed a law making marijuana legal for medical purposes by obtaining a “medical marijuana” card from a doctor. (You can NOT get a prescription for it. Only federal prescriptions are valid and they presently do not issue them.)
    The problem here is that no state can pass a law to legalize something that is illegal by FEDERAL law. So far this is being handled differently depending upon which city or county you might be in at the time. Some areas have instructed their officers not to arrest or cite people for personal possession of marijuana. Some areas will still arrest or cite you. No matter what area you are in, if you are caught by FEDERAL agents such as the DEA you will be prosecuted in federal court and your medical marijuana card and any city/state laws will not help you at all. This has happened to dozens of people in California so far.

  • vbd April 13, 2011 (8:32 pm)

    @Danny, if you want to “stop the madness”, an excellent place to start is by getting rid of the Payday Loan sharks. A prison for terrorists would be better in the neighborhood than that rat hole. GLAD to see it go.

    I welcome the shop as a recognition that marijuana has legitimate medicinal use.

  • Mookie April 13, 2011 (8:47 pm)

    @Danny – how would there be a major difference in this community? This business will not be a place selling pot to kids, and they will have security in place possibly better than the nearly 50 traditional pharmacies all over West Seattle. Medical marijuana brings proven relief to our community members who are battling chronic pain, and recoving from side effects of traditional medical treatments such as chemotherapy.
    This Northwest Patient Resource Center sounds like it will be managed by very responsible and caring people, and I welcome them and wish them success.
    Controlled medical marijuana facilities aren’t where kids are already getting pot, it’s been available in your neighborhood, in my neighborhood, all around this community for a loooong time. Things haven’t changed since I was able to buy pot on the grounds of my junior high school here 35 years ago, and it had nothing to do with medical marijuana facilities. With the current laws on marijuana, kids – including your grand kids – can already get it much easier than they can alcohol precisely because it’s not regulated and controlled for legal sale only to adults the way alcohol is.
    I was walking through the Alaska Junction one day and was passed by a couple teens deep in conversation. Just average-looking teens…and the girl was saying to her companion “Oh, I know, totally; everybody around West Seattle smokes pot.” Doubtless she’s someone’s daughter, niece, granddaughter – I wonder how and where she and her peers buy pot? Sure not any place that checks them for I.D.

  • Pibal April 13, 2011 (8:55 pm)

    Anyone else think Mr. Davis’ responses were evasive? Long on “feel good” words, short on specifics…

    • WSB April 13, 2011 (9:06 pm)

      Pibal, they also have invited us in to see once they’re up and running. And we will take them up on it – TR

  • Yardvark April 13, 2011 (8:56 pm)

    I am so glad those payday loan thieves hit the highway. Predatory lending is probably one the worst things to have in any neighborhood.

    Danny- A lot of folks prefer not to smoke so there are a number of other methods by which they can still take their prescribed medicine.

    Welcome to town, John. Thanks for putting your neck on the line to help remove the fear around what seems to be a very promising and natural medicine.

    It’ll be interesting to see how your business develops.

  • josh April 13, 2011 (9:41 pm)

    Danny what exactly do you have to endure by seeing patients pick up their medicine and do you really believe that are there “people who are used to violence” will flock to West Seattle because this dispensary has moved in? Anything is better than those ghetto making payday loans spots. We need to legalize and regulate today! Also you can get high on weed with out smoking it, this must scare the hell out of you Danny. Think about it people walking around you all day and you do not know if they are high or not. ooh scary! what it must be like to live in fear.

  • Neighbor April 13, 2011 (9:51 pm)

    hey you know what would have been really great in that spot? a trader joe’s…the mythical trader joe’s of west seattle…

  • Pibal April 13, 2011 (10:03 pm)

    Sounds good Tracy. Thank you…

  • jet city girl April 13, 2011 (10:09 pm)

    Legalization is on the way

  • coffee April 13, 2011 (10:16 pm)

    Everyone is welcome to their opinions, that’s a good thing about America. I would ask though, until you or a loved one has a dibilitating illness that medical pot can assist, to really think about the comments you cast. Terry perhaps I will see you there when I transport my best friend who is loosing a very painful battle to lupus.

  • Concerned Athlete April 13, 2011 (10:26 pm)

    The US Government will never legalize any drug. And even if they did, you wont be able to grow it, sell it or smoke it in public. It is illegal to purchase, that is why, they hide behind the slogan, “donation” You are still subject to Federal Law. Also, keep in mind, I did a research study with more than 25 clinics in Western Washington, and not candidly, did employees and medical professionals mention that close to %90 of “patients” are not stricken with cancer or chronic diseases where marijuana would help, and that the %90 are using the cards to prevent prosecution for possession of marijuana. I am a concerned citizen that knows the law, and I do know, that card holders abuse the privilege to allow their recreational smoking habit. THE FACT OF THE MATTER IS MOST CARD HOLDERS LIE ABOUT CONDITIONS TO RECEIVE THE CARD, and this is %100 for profit business, not in the business of healing but in the business of exploiting a legal loophole.

  • Concerned Athlete April 13, 2011 (10:31 pm)

    I am in the early stages of creating a documentary about the business. Hidden cameras and interviews are included to show how they operate and the abuse of the legal loophole. It is an eye opener, when you see most customers are not terminally ill or have a debilitating illness. It will also show how easy it is to get someone to sign your medical card.

  • Paul April 13, 2011 (11:08 pm)

    Hey Athlete, may I ask why that even concerns you?
    I don’t smoke and could care less who is ( as long as they are not minors ). What are your motives? If your so troubled with loopholes check out wallstreet or G.E

  • stu April 13, 2011 (11:39 pm)

    I have over 400 patients I work with, and most of us patients, dont pride ourselves in looking Sick and Dieing…… Most of us would like to look normal, and fit in with the regular “hip” styles. Cancer doesnt choose ages, So think next time you see someone walking into a co-op, and ask yourself…. Do you have their medical records? do you know if they have cancer??? Most people forget that if you have cancer, you can still walk, talk, and act like a human being. I have a patient who leans toward the “gangster” style, Yet he wants to fit in with his friends and doesnt want sympathy for having a terminal condition. Trust me…. YOU DONT KNOW WHO IS SICK!

  • MBEE April 13, 2011 (11:51 pm)

    Regulation means to be rid of the black market side, and all the violence and crime that come with it. All the negative that surround this industry are from cannabis being illegal, not from the harm it presents. Get rid of the drug dealers and allow it to be regulated.

  • flyonthewall April 13, 2011 (11:53 pm)

    Athlete- clearly you are not going to claim that you are such an omnipotent individual that you can tell just by looking or filming someone whether they are sick or not? If so, let me know where you got your special training for those skills!

    I am a medical user for a permanent nerve condition in my foot that also requires expensive meds with side effects. Because of marijuana, I control the pain better, can use less meds and can now walk nearly 25 miles a week to stay healthy otherwise. The alternative without marijuana is frankly too” debilitating” to consider!

  • Artwit April 14, 2011 (5:50 am)

    I’m glad to see a new business providing a public service. We got rid of alcohol Prohibition in 1933, and ending cannabis Prohibition will pay vast dividends in restoring respect for law and taking the profit out of organized crime.

  • TB April 14, 2011 (6:38 am)

    Bring on the DVD

  • samson April 14, 2011 (7:52 am)

    oh boy, wish you the best luck with this location… hope i dont see any polices coming to you at this location and finding more troubles. Just hope there is no crime increasing in this location… (cross fingers)

  • Concerned Athlete April 14, 2011 (8:09 am)

    I did not say once, the information given was based on appearance. MD’s have provided the medical records which will be shown in the documentary, without names due to HIPAA laws, will prove my point. I have had access to the medical records. And you ask, why do I care? Because its a shady business and illegal, there is no difference from these clinics, than a legal massage parlor or a brothel. And certainly if you feel the information i get from the medical staff is not credible and their judgement is wrong, imagine if the feds feel the same way and revoke your cards.

  • RJB April 14, 2011 (8:11 am)

    I say welcome…I love living in progressive West Seattle where we have a great social outlet, (WSB) so this discusion can take place. I wish them luck and respect what they are doing.

  • voodoo April 14, 2011 (8:21 am)

    All arguments about medical marijuana aside, I agree with Mongo – it’s too bad we couldn’t get another type of business on the south end of 35th.

  • ItsAlreadyBeenBrung April 14, 2011 (8:38 am)

    It is a business that will profit and stand on it’s own instead of disparage those around it.

    Then the rest will come. Pot, taken in any form, makes you hungry. I predict: a chinese restaurant or Bahn-Mi deli is next! Then hopefully the slumlord building on the NW corner and the business owners who occupy its spaces (one of which briefly occupied the pot dealer’s space as a restaurant BTW) will finally get a grip on brooms, a paint brush and some new light bulbs making all 4 corners of 35th and Roxbury look spiffy-ready and open for business.

  • Philip April 14, 2011 (8:39 am)

    Very glad to see this going in and thrilled to see strong support. I am not a user at all but if I were in a condition to need this, I would be so happy to know it’s close. When my beloved life partner was going through chemo, it would have been really nice to have this type of help with his sick days… he did not look sick even though he was at stage 4 cancer with strong reactions to the treatments.

    So glad to also see the Payday Loan filth out of another location as they do nothing but prey on the poor – I know because I was there at one time in my life.

  • grr April 14, 2011 (8:41 am)

    sooner or later (hopefully in my lifetime), the insanity of marijuana being illegal will end. Legalize it, regulate it, tax the hell out of it, and, once and for all, FIX THE $*)@$% DUI Laws. You drive stoned or drunk..FIRST OFFENSE, you spend 24 hrs in jail. End of story.

  • jiggers April 14, 2011 (8:49 am)

    It’s a perfect place, right on the edge of gangland.

  • Dr. Richard Curtis April 14, 2011 (8:56 am)

    It seems outrageous that anyone would complain about a business that seeks to help people with severe medical problems. What sort of ethics do these people follow? They want their useless business to succeed but want to keep one that helps people from opening? That is just perverse and to think they think they are taking some sort of moral high ground by refusing medicine to people. What evil jackasses!

    As to the larger social issue, the people who are concerned about marijuana use in general need to recognize that they are on the losing side of history. Legalization will come and it will be a good thing. Marijuana is far safer than alcohol and to have a national policy that treats dangerous things as safe and safe things as dangerous is not just irrational but destructive of democratic processes because such irrationality undermines public support for those democratic process. Who would think it is reasonable to support a government that makes decisions on the basis of ignorance, fear and greed?

    Don’t worry about legalization, push for it, it is a good thing that will improve education, improve conditions in jails, lead to less crime and violence in society and it will improve the WA ecomony tremendously as we are well situated for hemp farming, as well as marijuana farming — and hemp is the next big think in agriculture.

    Most importantly hemp farming is one of the single biggest things that can be done to protect the environment because it can be used to replace so many things that require destruction of the environment.

  • k2 April 14, 2011 (9:11 am)

    hey concerned athlete, you are a RIOT!

    of course it’s for profit, so are the drug dealers that are doing it today on the black market, and so is the alcohol business, don’t know any non-profit breweries…but I guess they’re legal so they’re fine?!

    People ARE taking advantage of the loophole because it’s a stupid law in the first place…and we need to move this into the progressive light, start regulating just like alcohol (Alcohol is a legal drug by the way, just like Caffeine).

    Doctors tell you not to take Vitamins because there are serious complications with overdoses(totally untrue), yet they turn around an prescribe you pain killers, antibiotics, and other pharma CRAP that kills more than 100,000 people a year from adverse reactions. And how about you athlete, loading up on Creatine, or androstenedione to get that competitive advantage? That sh*t is full of more toxic heavy metals than you can count…good luck with your cancer, you may even need some weed to get through the pain.

    You need to smoke some pot and relax….or maybe swing by my place, i’m a card carrier, i’ll make you some rice krispie treats that will make you see the world a bit differently.

  • Kevin April 14, 2011 (9:14 am)

    Block Watch captain- Im glad he talked to the business owners. Considering the buisness around there are few. Come and talk to us. The community that lives there. If we are uninformed, we wont be after we sit down. Contact me. Lets set a date/time I know people want to talk to you and your buisness. Because if you do stay for the long term, there is no sense starting this off on a sour note.
    Neighbor/Husband/Fathe -The fact is these places are targeted by criminals. Im sure they just want to help. Thats great. But it will bring more problems into a neighborhood that is slowly falling apart. I cant recall who said it but somebody mentioned that this is 5 blocks from Roxhill elementry. What would happen if this was 5 blocks from Holy Rosary or Lafayette? We dont need an invitation for criminal activity in our neighborhood. We have enough already. Alot of pot + Utopian based liberals= criminal gold mine.

  • lina rose April 14, 2011 (9:24 am)

    i live just down the road from this corner and welcome a new business. And, I am glad to see the payday lenders out – they are far more destructive in a community.

  • Nulu April 14, 2011 (9:53 am)

    “Doctors tell you not to take Vitamins because there are serious complications with overdoses(totally untrue),” k2

    What an outrageous uninformed statement.

    Vitamins like other drugs do cause serious complications from overdoses. This is well established.

    The quackery and false claims made for vitamins are largely allowed by the feds due to the billion dollar vitamin lobby.

    Read the labels carefully and you will see the lengths to which the vitamin industry goes to mislead the public and gullible consumers. They often face government sanctions for claims not proven or provable. The vitamin D research by reputable science is just the latest example.

  • Property_Owner April 14, 2011 (10:09 am)

    I own a property in the Alaska Junction (not on California but a parallel street) and have been approached by a medical mj dispensary to rent my space and am considering it. Sounds like the community would recieve it well. Interested in feedback, as I would like to keep a tenant for several years.

  • Tony S April 14, 2011 (11:02 am)

    Does anyone know if regular pharmacy’s are robbed any more than a pot dispensary? Do most people realize a ‘regular’ pharmacy is a far more lucrative target if you’re looking to steal drugs?

    Concerned: “The US Government will never legalize any drug”: What the heck are you talking about? Tabacco, alcohol, aspirin, vicadin, viagra, penicillin, cipro, statins, anti-depressants, etc. etc. etc.

    They legalize “drugs” ALL THE TIME.

  • GiveMeLiberty April 14, 2011 (11:52 am)

    Not everyone who lives in WS is as “progressive” as RJB. I’m very upset about this “facility” moving into my neighborhood. As stated earlier, this is an illegal drug and should be treated as such. I prefer an empty building to this venue! I still stand by my earlier comment..there goes the neighborhood!

  • danny April 14, 2011 (12:36 pm)

    to wescatle am confused by your use of the word ‘deception’ i would have loved to seen some other positve biz for the community at this spot. remembering the old artic circle restaurant in that spot and having pnly lived a stone throw from there i can,t tell u the memories i have walking there with my farter and gettin a shake and burger.yes i am slightly in love with that spot. all that aside i have been to most of these dis to see for my self and 90percent of these people are young ablebody people infact a lot are thet people i know and they will tell u a card is not hard to get look at the little nickle . if you want to use it fine grow it get it do what ever but don,t keep puting these things up! yes payday loans suck. in themiddle of white center another one is opening up’ the old great city restaurant’ come on is that what white center really needs. and if you think that there is not going to be trouble and violence in and around these place you are WRONG robberies outside and in side. hidden is one thing but now they know where its at! and they are very busy like mcdonalds in and out . they will smoke out front in there cars . they will examine the content in plain view.any one who has lived next to a drug house knows of these sighn. and now there will be no dif. go to one and watch and tell me if you like what u c! MED POT is a good thing but not for god and contry to c. its a private matter for u and your self. BIG EYE SOR FOR OUR LITTLE MISS WEST SEATTLE. WHAT NEXT LETS PUT A HERION JOINT NEXT TO HOLY FAMILY

  • danny April 14, 2011 (12:51 pm)

    to josh,,,i don,t care if thery are high around me !! ooh! if u mantaine fine. i belive you have lead a shelterd life if you don,t think about the violence. having grown up in high point i have seen that most of the violenc was pointed towards those that have the same attitude that u take. don,t be so naive.and yes my kids are very smart and they will ask about what is going on there. and at such a young age i don,t know that they will be able to handle the resposiablity of makeing that kind of choice to smoke or not to smoke.the number one kille of women is lung cancer stop smoking anything. take your meds a dif way. and get all these places out of our nieghborhood. i know of 4 all with in 5 miles of each other. are you all so high already that u can,t c what this does to us as a whole community

  • Amanda April 14, 2011 (1:22 pm)

    Personally danny, I am confused by your comments. Along with Athlete and his/her criminality of looking at people’s health records to justify their fears. Crime appears anywhere. I read on this blog at least 3 times a week someone getting their door, window, garage kicked in and stuff stolen. Cars riffled through or stolen. Even people getting mugged, for that matter. Do you think any of those criminals then go to the local marijuana dispensary and get their pot? My guess is no. They either smoke meth, or maybe coke, or shoot heroin. Because people on those drugs are so addicted, they commit crimes to feed their habit. Robbing a dispensary is like robbing any other store. It’s just that the motivation is pot, maybe some cash. If you could grow it in your backyard, then you wouldn’t have to steal it. Obviously danny, you have some deep seated resentment against pot and pot smokers, and that’s okay. Just remember that these times are a changing, and that new, responsible business are good for a neighborhood. Just look East to White Center for your example. You have Stan’s and Taboo right along with Proletariat (have you *seen* the kids in there) and Full Tilt. Co-existance is possible with tolerance.

  • Concerned Parent April 14, 2011 (1:25 pm)

    Ah yes! Dr. Curtis supports it sooooooo by alllll means go for it!!!!

  • White Center Karen April 14, 2011 (1:59 pm)

    Excellent points, as usual, Ms. Amanda. K

  • Nulu April 14, 2011 (2:03 pm)

    ‘Concerned Parent’, Dr. Curtis gives rational reasons which you are welcome to repudiate.

    The fact that you choose to respond with a snide personal remark about Dr. Curtis illustrates your lack of any credible response.

    The points he raises deserve discussion, your response deserves deletion.

  • HeyJoe April 14, 2011 (2:05 pm)

    With all due respect, it sounds like “GiveMeLiberty” might need to bone up on the definition of liberty.

    Doesn’t sound to me like he/she is much of a fan of liberty at all.

  • JanS April 14, 2011 (2:06 pm)

    concerned athlete…I am hoping that you will be telling the names of the docs who are handing out medical records to you (names erased). I doubt that it’s true. So, I’d like to see proof in your little documentary. Once more…WA State does not issue cards. Every time you say that you lose credibility. And Danny, you can’t get one in Little Nickel. If someone says you can, ask for proof.Ask to see their letter from their doc. It’s printed on special paper that can’t be copied. Bring facts to your arguments, please.

    About this business of “looking sick” .. I am 64. I work, I socialize, I do things that healthy people do – I participate in life. I no longer have cancer, but I do have other health conditions that have warranted the use of MMJ to fight nausea, etc.etc. You would never know that I use – although not on a daily basis – by just looking at me. Again…how do you know what “illness” looks like? Can you tell that I use prescription drugs by looking at my face? That I drink alcohol by the clothes I wear? Let’s get real , folks!

  • danny April 14, 2011 (2:31 pm)

    amanda thank u for your pattience with me and my opions. i have had me experiance with pot and yes i did smoke it. ever notice the kids that come out in the summer time i don,t belive that those are our kids they come up with the weather and this year they will target these stores and if you ever have seen this kind of violence it leaves a big scare on you and you will never be the same. yes i agree let them grow it or smoke it,,,great,,, but don,t turn our no my streets in to vending machines for drughsas is happening to cali already. i have lived a very ‘colorfull life’ and i know where this is all going and all of us will regret this. u will see more in front of your face in public and so will the children. yes i am angry with drugs and what it has done to me and my west seattle. i am fine because i have a head on my shoulders and am smart. but what about the rest of us that aren,t so blessed,its a slippery slope. legal prostitutes, and all else. and yes its all the same, very much so. good luck my poor little girl west seattle

  • danny April 14, 2011 (2:57 pm)

    to janS yes you can get your card in the little nickle for 150 to 200$ you can have a choice of many many docs that will give you a pot recomendation card. for that matter try it your self you will have no prob gettin a legitamet card. so please wake up. those are the facts

  • Paul April 14, 2011 (3:17 pm)

    athlete – I like your ambition, just wish it was directed at something more worthy. I am sure we have much bigger problems than a puff of smoke or a happy ending. – on a side note, how come it’s ok to get drunk and drive, fight, blackout. but not ok to get high and eat twinkies? I have not drink or smoke in 20 years but is it obvious which is worse

  • Mark April 14, 2011 (3:40 pm)

    Oh great….another pot shack

  • JanS April 14, 2011 (6:17 pm)

    danny, these are shyster, unethical docs who advertise in the little nickel. No guarantee that you’ll get a letter of recommendation. Once more. Marijuana CARDS do NOT exist in WA state. I don’t need to go to one of these unethical docs. I have a legitimate doc who I got my letter from (a nephrologist), and I didn’t ask for it. He simply said that I would qualify for it, having a life threatening, irreversible disease. And again, if these docs are handing out the letters without abiding by the law, then they are breaking the law it’s that simple. Of course, there are always people who will try to get away with it. But I can guarantee you that no one can walk into one of these facilities off the street and simply buy. We are not all potheads. I do not use everyday. And I’m not allowed to smoke it. Period. I’m 64, white, female, law abiding, have been in the community for 36 years. If it (or other drugs) messed you up, then that is you…it is not everyone. Please don’t paint us all with one brush.

  • (required) April 14, 2011 (9:54 pm)

    This WSB story is well written, as usual. John Davis says “some people see us as invaders, but we’re just trying to do a business.” Was he, like, stoned? Du-u-u-u-u-ude! I hope he’s as good in business as he is at articulating a coherent idea. Then this pothead paradise will go the way of the loan shark store that used to be there. This is not a good business in any society. Danny, you’re right — and far wiser than the pro-pothead retractors are giving you credit for. Ignore them. You’re right. Thank you for your wise comments.

  • John Davis April 14, 2011 (9:54 pm)

    Kevin (Block Watch Captain, etc)- I am one of the owners of the new space. I would love to talk to you. We really are striving to do this correctly. I have a very large stake in not having robberies. I plan on personally being there for much of the time. It would hurt me economically and put me in danger to make myself a target. It would also hurt me because the local community and police will view my business as something that is bringing crime into the neighborhood. I am committed to be a positive member of this community.
    I think when you understand what we are doing and the great lengths we are taking to make sure that crime does not have the opportunity to happen you will be much more comfortable with our location. We are not rich but we are spending the money it takes to make sure that we are the most secure and well run business with a cannabis element in Washington State. I have managed these types of facilities for 3 years and have over 15 years experience in facility design and implementation for a variety of businesses. This will be a very pleasant, comfortable but state of the art business. We actually chose a former check cashing/ payday loan space because these businesses (what ever you think of them) already have some complex security systems in place.
    We understand the benefit to us and the neighborhood to make sure that things such as hanging out in front of our establishment, smoking in a car in the parking lot or generally being a nuisance in or near our building, does not happen. We will have a no tolerance policy for these types of behavior. We are a membership organization and these types of behaviors will void your membership.
    Personally, I would have preferred to open without this type of fanfare. Not because I am not proud of what I do but because I know that change can make people uncomfortable. It is the Seattle way to be non intrusive. People that have a need for medical cannabis will know what we are. People that don’t generally have no clue what we do. This is providing access to patients without throwing our business in the face of people that may not have a favorable impression of cannabis in general. Whether or not I agree with people, it is important to be respectful of their beliefs.
    How can I get in touch with you?

  • Renaissance Red April 15, 2011 (1:47 am)

    you have to provide your medical records and documentation of an illness to receive a card. And yeah some people do fib to be a ‘card carrying member, that’s on them! We used dispensaries while my partner was going through chemo. Honestly, people who use cannabis for their illness do reap benefits. He was able to actually eat and get through that process of months of high dose chemo. Please don’t think ALL of people who use MMJ are lowlifes/thugs/druggies. And if you had something like cancer wouldn’t YOU want something to help w/ all the horrid side effects?

  • w.s. maverick April 15, 2011 (6:00 am)

    i think we should make west seattle the dispensary spot of seattle, just think of all the new buisness

  • John April 15, 2011 (8:15 am)

    I think having these types of businesses will be a big improvement to what used to be the method of getting weed. I’m sure that this will decrease the amount of “hopped up young hoodlums” that used to go to that house across the street we all wondered about. Now, law abiding patients will be going to a legal dispensary and legally purchasing their marijuana between the hours of 11:00 am till 7:00 pm. From a verified business, not Slim Shady. The hopped up young hoodlums (who never really caused that much trouble- think about it) will be going to these “pot shacks” as its been described. By the way, its “Crack Shack”, lets get our nomenclature strait. Lets start worrying when they start opening up the “Crack Shacks” , until then,I’m sure we’ll be fine. If you really want to see “out of control” check out MMJ on Craigslist. Slim Shady is still in business and he will come right to your house. I wonder if Slim paying taxes?, verifing patience? Checking ID’s? These dispensaries will be the best way to distribute marijuana; what has already been going on anyway. (from the house across the street we all wondered about)

  • Concerned Athlete April 15, 2011 (8:43 am)

    John Davis,

    I am a property owner, who owns property in more than a few areas in West Seattle. I only ask that you be sensitive to the families in the area, who have children. I am not insisting your malicious, but as in every business, you’ll have disruptive customers. I and other residents would prefer the hours of your business not to exceed 6pm. I ask and not tell, that you conduct business as if there was a police station next door or across the street. Do you think people will get their weed and sit in their car with music blaring & smoking? If you can guarantee a discreet, non disruptive client base, which can be handled by rules implemented by your clinic, I think the community will grow to accept your business.

  • Kevin April 15, 2011 (9:19 am)

    I will try and stop by the shop this weekend. If nobody Is there I will leave a buisness card under the door. Thank you. Or Facebook. Kevin Andrew Andrew.

  • GiveMeLiberty April 15, 2011 (9:43 am)

    HeyJoe….I know exactly what the definition of Liberty is and it has nothing to do with someone selling an illegal substance. Did you look at the front page of the Seattle Times this morning???

  • thedarby April 15, 2011 (9:52 am)

    Initiative 1149 seeks to end marijuana prohibition in Washington State

    Help us make cannabis legal in Washington in 2011.

    Welcome, Ents!
    APRIL 14, 2011
    We’d like to give a quick shout-out to our friends the Trees, denizens of reddit’s community on cannabis culture.

    Everyone at Sensible Washington appreciates your visits, but it was our initiative author and co-sponsor Douglas Hiatt who went so far as to say “We welcome all Ents, Entwives, and any other creatures from Middle Earth with open arms.”

    Those of you not familiar with reddit should read up on what happened when their corporate overlords tried to stop them from running paid ads for California’s Prop 19 last year. We hope you, citizen, will take this as an object lesson in taking a stand against reefer madness. Join our Facebook page, and let your friends know that you stand with the majority on ending marijuana prohibition.

    And a reminder to you out-of-staters: there’s a lot you can do in terms of tech support, outreach, counter-propaganda, and good ole cold hard cash. $500 gets us 1,000,000 ad impressions on Facebook during 4/20 week. Help us out today so you can say you supported us before we were big.

  • Dr. MyEye April 15, 2011 (10:18 am)

    John, however well intentioned you are, what you do is illegal. I’d prefer to keep illegal activity in all forms out of my neighborhood.

  • John Davis April 15, 2011 (11:02 am)

    Thank you Concerned Athlete,
    We absolutely care about those with families in the community. As I say, our intention is to only be visible as a business with a medical cannabis component to those that have a need for medical cannabis. Thugs with loud music smoking in the parking lot will lose their membership and will have to go elsewhere. If they continue to be a nuisance the police will be called.
    Ironically, we considered some facilities due to their close proximity to police stations. One across the street would go a long way to discourage shady behaviors in the parking lot. Seattle police are the best I have ever worked with. Their culture is to protect the communities they serve. If my business becomes an issue to the community I will lose their respect. I have no intention of doing anything to do that. I, like any business owner, depend on the police presence should anything bad happen. We will absolutely run our business like there is a station across the street.
    May I ask why closing at 6pm would make you more comfortable? We are still discussing what hours we will be open. We certainly don’t anticipate being open past 8pm.

  • John Davis April 15, 2011 (11:24 am)

    Dr. MyEye,
    The citizens of Washington State overwhelmingly passed an initiative to allow for Medical Cannabis. I myself have seen the dramatic effect that this therapy has had on people’s quality of life. How can this initiative allow for cannabis but not allow any way to access it? Black market locations have no quality control for medicine and they exist right now in West Seattle usually in a private residence in a residential area. There will be less issues in a community that has a safe and comfortable way for those with a need to access their medicine as opposed to one that mandates that the sick find a resource through the black market. AIDS is one condition that often patients find some benefit using a medical cannabis therapy. Having these people deal with a black market does not put them in a position where they can get some counseling as to how to best utilize cannabis for their condition. Additionally, exposing people with compromised immune systems to substances that are often inhaled that may include pesticides, chemicals and mold and mildew spores is not a good idea. In an establishment such as ours, quality control for medicine is a top priority.
    I hope in the future you will come to view us as a resource to the community. I only ask that you give us the opportunity to gain your respect.

  • danny April 15, 2011 (11:48 am)

    john davis if youare so concerned about the public and there well being why don,t you open your house? oh would that not be conveinant? you open one ion mine as far as i am concerned. make your house a biz! its leagal look in to it… or would u rather dodo all over our nighborhood where our kids hop and skip there way through your prking lot on there way to roxhill or the park. or when halloween come along and they come knockin on the door ? when i was a kid we went to all biz and they gave out stuff. u know the gas station at the bottom of the hill by the school don,t even sell single beers because they know the effect that is has and the impact and they have respect and care about the community they say its because of the schools and the kids. they run a biz they are making a dollar. they are,t part of the prob they are part or the solution. stop being part of the prob… take it to your house and home

  • danny April 15, 2011 (1:34 pm)

    dear requierd thank u for your support and your god givin sense,, thank u.

  • Concerned Parent April 15, 2011 (4:10 pm)

    Thanks Nulu! You have an opinion. I have an opinion!

  • Concerned Athlete April 15, 2011 (10:01 pm)

    A property manager that I had hired, tried to manage a similar property that housed a business like this in California in an affluent neighborhood that wasn’t standing for it. They broke the windows, harassed customers, graffiti and set the building on fire. I applaud John Davis for his responses, but to answer his question, 6pm seems like a decent closing time, as business continues to run a half hour or an hour over closing time.

  • Bob April 16, 2011 (12:17 am)

    For obvious reasons this is not my real name. However I am a Seattle Police officer. Few quick things to address here. The first is there is not any clear rules regulating cards/letters or documentation for medical marijuana. I have personally seen teenagers with a printed card made on a regular computer with the girls name printed on it in pencil. I have seen letters and all kinds of different documentation for “medical marijuana”. the problem is there is no regulation on the cards like there is for a prescription or drivers license and more importantly I have never been told what is and is not allowed. Second thing is that marijuana is still illegal to use but our mayor has publicly stated parking complaints have a greater priority then marijuana complaints. Third, hypothetically if marijuana was 100% legal it would still be agains the law to operate a motor vehicle. It is still considered a DUI driving under the influence does not have to be only alcohol. It you drive on pain meds or muscle relaxers you still can get a DUI. I apologize for any weird words I’m typing this on my phone and it’s got bad auto correct and hard to do correct punctuation. So sorry about any errors.

  • John April 16, 2011 (8:22 am)

    For John Davis,
    I am a caregiver for a 55 year old quadropoligic male client who uses medical marijuiana for spasams he suffers routinely. Marijuiana seems the best remedy. He truly benefits from using MMJ.
    He has his medical marijuana authorization letter,written on tamper proof paper from his doctor. He also has a Washington state I.D.. He is excepted at similar despensaries
    I have a couple of questions. Will you have wheelchair access? He prefers going inside the dispensary and chose from the different types of medical marijuana sometimes available. Most places he has to stay outside in the car and I go inside and get the meds myself. Will you be stocking eatable marijuana products?
    We have discovered not all dispensaries have a professional attitude about dispensing MMJ. Frankly, it sometimes seems their just selling weed.
    Hopefully, welcome to our neighborhood.

  • anonyme April 16, 2011 (11:12 am)

    Bob, the police officer, made a very important point. Even if/when marijuana becomes legal and even if you are currently a medical marijuana patient, you cannot use it in public, nor be under the influence while driving. Exactly the same rules and laws would pertain to weed as to alcohol. This is a big problem in public parks and gardens where alleged “card holders” seem to think it their right to use anywhere, any time.

    I support the legalization of marijuana for a variety of reasons. However, I do believe that public use is a problem and that legalization might hopefully bring about clearer mandates on enforcement.

  • HeyJoe April 16, 2011 (3:30 pm)


    No, you clearly do not know what liberty means. Either that or you just don’t care about it very much, if at all.

    It sure would be nice if you small government types would walk the walk once in a while instead of constantly just talking the talk. I don’t think I’ll hold my breath though.

  • jah April 16, 2011 (10:01 pm)

    legalize it

  • grr April 17, 2011 (9:03 pm)

    To Bob..Thank you for the service you and your fellow officers provide. Your job is certainly NOT an easy one, and one that too many people take for granted. I’ve done a few Citizen Ride Alongs with the SPD. You are all true heroes.

    I would like to see some extra push from the SPD Union to our legislatures to help BOOST the DUI laws and drastically increase the punishment, ESPECIALLY for repeat offenders.

    To John Davis.. Sounds to me like you’re doing everything possible to provide a very needed service, as well as being as respectful as possible to the neighborhood. Communication is key. Keep up the good work!

    Danny/CA…do you ever protest or complain to the myriad of bars in White Center that put untold numbers of intoxicated drivers on the road every night?? And don’t give me the ‘legal vs. illegal’ crap.

  • MyEye April 18, 2011 (9:33 am)


    Great point, white center has a problem already. Adding a distribution point for a schedule 1 narcotic with no regulation will help how?

    John Davis isn’t doing this because he’s a concerned citizen, he’s doing it because he’s out to make a buck. He’s a drug dealer with, in all likelihood, no medical background at all.

  • West Seattle Native April 18, 2011 (10:37 am)

    I love all the people on here complaining about how medicinal marijuana is going to harm their neighborhood. Meanwhile your children/grandchildren are pilfering your medicine cabinet and selling your xanax, methodone, oxycontin, and all of your other legalized prescription chemicals on the streets. I fail to see how marijuana is the real problem when, between tobacco, alcohol, prescription pharmaceuticals, and marijuana, the marijuana is the most highly regulated substance of the aforementioned.

  • MyEye April 18, 2011 (11:18 am)

    West Seattle Native,

    Sounds like you have some serious problems if you have Xanax, methadone, and Oxycontin in your medicine cabinet.

    Also its a red-herring to argue what’s a worse drug. The issue isn’t are there worse drugs than marijuana or if other substances can be abused, the issue is should we open a dispensary to sell an *illegal* and completely unregulated drug.

    As someone who lives in the area I think we shouldn’t. I believe it will be harmful to the area and is illegal.

  • grr April 18, 2011 (3:11 pm)

    There are plenty of thing is our history that used to be illegal, that no longer are. Marijuana is soon to be one of them. As well it should be.\

    As far as a ‘distribution point’, it’s simply no different than a bar or liqour store to me. Frankly, I WISH it was controlled exactly the same as liquor. Not to begrudge an honest business man trying to make some $$, but I’d rather those profits go to helping pay for schools and roads and all the other things that need to be paid for, INCLUDING drug/alcohol education for our youth.

  • MyEye April 19, 2011 (2:05 pm)

    Once Marijuana is legal, let’s revist the merits of having a “medical” marijuana shop open in WS. There are plenty of things that people feel should be legal that aren’t, why don’t we open a brothel in some of the vacant buildings in westwood. Let’s raise the speed limit on I-35th. Just because you feel it’s no different than a liquor store doesn’t mean it’s as legal as a liquor store. Again, this isn’t a debate about what drug is worse.
    This is a blackmarket drug trying it’s best to become grey market, being percribed (largely but not entirely) to people with fictitous ailments and delivered by those with zero qualifications.

  • danny April 19, 2011 (4:43 pm)

    my eye! a voice of reason!that you cristine gregrourie for that vote of hope today

  • Concerned Athlete April 20, 2011 (10:56 pm)


    Kudos! I am glad there are citizens like you in West Seattle…..! Keep in mind pro-marijuana people, nothing you smoke, will ever be good for you!

  • anonyme April 21, 2011 (4:25 pm)

    Why do we now have 6 so-called medical marijuana businesses between West Seattle and White Center? How many are in Magnolia?

    The new pot bar in White Center has really tipped the scales for me. At what point does the ‘bartender’ cut the tokers off?

    MyEye,I would also point out that liquor stores are usually robbed for cash, even if the thieves take a six-pack to go. MM facilities are targeted for the product. As long as marijuana is illegal and has a black market value, MM businesses will be magnets for crime.

    Concerned Athlete, you make an excellent and often overlooked point about smoking. The act of smoking causes disease, regardless of the herb in the bowl. Truly medical marijuana would not be dispensed by the bud, but in a form that would not potentially cause even greater health problems…if they even existed to begin with.

    I support the use of truly justified medical marijuana. I even support legalization. What I don’t support is this dangerous limboland with no real regulation and abundant abuse.

    Is someone seriously, perhaps habitually stoned on MJ any worse, any more obnoxious, any more dangerous than a drunk? Absolutely not. That doesn’t make either option a good one.

  • KT April 21, 2011 (7:26 pm)

    Bob, Thanks for posting. I would like to address your statement that “there is not any clear rules regulating cards/letters or documentation for medical marijuana”–

    I believe that RCW 69.51A clearly states what documentation is needed for an individual to be an authorized medical cannabis user.

    Specifically, ” ‘Valid documentation’ means:

    (a) A statement signed and dated by a qualifying patient’s health care professional written on tamper-resistant paper, which states that, in the health care professional’s professional opinion, the patient may benefit from the medical use of marijuana; and

    (b) Proof of identity such as a Washington state driver’s license or identicard, as defined in RCW 46.20.035.”

    While I recognize that there has been a recent boom in the Washington state medical marijuana “industry” and that it has been getting more attention than ever, the original law was passed over a decade ago.

    It is a concern to me that an individual in local law enforcement has “never been told what is and is not allowed” regarding this particular issue.

    Thanks, KT

  • NW Corner of 35th and Roxbury April 22, 2011 (12:00 am)

    RE:Comment by ItsAlreadyBeenBrung —

    I will gladly forward your comment to our slumlord building owner who resides in California. He’s already put down many ideas we have for improving the building, if he has to pay for any of it. If you have specific, inexpensive ideas for us, please let us know, thanks!

  • Concerned Athlete April 22, 2011 (8:36 am)

    Its common knowledge that if something is illegal, it detours a lot of people from buying it/trying it, and in some cases makes people want it more. Its more accessible when legal. Children and teens are very influenced. If they are told…”hey, its not a gateway drug, hey its not as bad as prescription drugs, hey its not that bad, everyone does it”, you will have more kids influenced to do it. Especially if there is a storefront for it. Why would people want a perfectly healthy person to smoke weed? If the government keeps it illegal, they are taking a stand against our culture, which accepts just about everything that is taboo. I understand I live in an ultra liberal state, but just like casinos (non-native American), keep them outside Seattle city limits. If we made prostitution legal, and brothels were aloud to be open, do you think your daughter would work there? “Oh, hey, your father used to go to those type of places all the time, they aren’t that bad!” Do you think your son would go there for an intimate play date? Probably. But because they are illegal, and some of us Americans still are persuaded by consequences and teach our children about the same consequences, we don’t partake in illegal activities, because they are illegal. Ive heard the argument, that marijuana is harmless, and I have heard the same argument about prostitution. Not everyone who smokes marijuana has self control, what happens when the marijuana no longer has the side effects, because the user smokes it so much, and wants to try something harder? Then it becomes a gateway. I am putting all drugs into one category, not which is worse, or which is better, ALL BAD. In terms of alcohol, you usually start drinking beer, but after you realize it doesn’t have the same effect/doesn’t have the high alcohol content, you move on to higher proof, like vodka or whiskey. Would you want a brothel opened next door to your home? When something becomes legal by law, it becomes morally legal. Just because we smoked it in our early years, doesn’t mean its OK for them to do it now. I am sure most of us don’t want our children making the same mistakes we did.

  • Concerned Athlete April 22, 2011 (8:44 am)

    In Ireland, the number of children treated for mental disorders caused by smoking cannabis has quadrupled since the government downgraded the legal status of the drug, according to an article in the Sunday Times (September 18, 2005). Addaction, an Irish drug charity, told the Times that “three months after police stopped arresting anyone found in possession of small amounts of the drug, the overall number of users treated for such conditions rose 42%.

  • Concerned Athlete April 22, 2011 (8:46 am)

    According to a New York Times article, “the mayor (of Maastricht, Netherlands) wants to move most of the city’s 16 licensed cannabis clubs to the edge of town, preferably close to the border” (with Belgium and Germany). Mayor Gerd Leers is reacting to growing concerns among residents who “complain of traffic problems, petty crime, loitering and public urination. There have been shootings between gangs. Maastricht’s police force…is already spending one-third of its time on drug-related problems.” Cannabis clubs have drawn “pushers of hard drugs from Amsterdam, who often harass people on the streets.” According to a police spokesman, the clubs have also attracted people looking to buy marijuana in quantity. Piet Tans, the police spokesman also stated that “People who come from far away don’t just come for the five grams you can buy legally over the counter…They think pounds and kilos; they go to the dealers who operate in the shadows.

  • ItsAlreadyBeenBrung April 24, 2011 (8:48 am)

    Dear NW Corner of 35th and Roxbury,

    Thank You. I do believe the tenants are supposed to upkeep their spaces as well. The church tenants of the Safeway property are the ones keeping up that property not the owners.

    Look no further than across the street to the Church for ideas to keep your business looking spiffy.

    (in approximate order of expense starting with free to you)
    Build a plan for regular maintenance with your fellow tenants
    Wash regularly
    clean the windows regularly
    change the faded tattered marketing posters [Daisy! I am talking to you!] (that should be free for free) in the windows of your business/salon/bodega at least once every 3 months.
    manicure plantings
    change light bulbs
    If the owner refused to perform maintenance they are supposed to perhaps you can let them know you will hire to get the work done and deduct the cost from your rent. If you get an estimate in advance and submit a proposal to the owner it might just be accepted.

    The white gravel stuccuo exterior of the building might be too far gone for washing but paint might just work.

    Contact the city if the owner is not legally doing their part.

    Post the owners business address or email address and I will write them a letter.

    In summary — Spiff up and you will get more business. I guarantee it.

    Good Luck!

Sorry, comment time is over.