O’Cannabiz was the second trade show/expo I’ve attended since making the leap into the cannabis industry full time in January … so I’m an expert on the subject matter now right? After attending Lift with a focus on learning as much as possible & creating top quality content, I wanted to take a different approach this time around. A casual conversational approach where I meet as many people as possible, and learn as much about the cultural side of the industry as possible … in other words – hang out.
On Thursday evening the buzz was building, and and the #1 concern was having some fun before the weekend conference. I was humbled to be invited out with the CCI crew on Thursday (shoutout to Mr. Elkin) rolled in uber convoy style with none other than Trina Fraser and Deepa Anand! It was fun getting to know some of the industry’s best and brightest on a more personal level. Even the industry’s top law minds need time to rest and relax sometimes! After all the fun, I was honoured to set Deepak Anand and Barinder Rasode up with new headshots at the conference the next day too (with 100 trees being planted by Ethical Image in their honour as well) which you can take a peek at here: www.ethicalimage.com/headshots
Another one of my favourite moments was meeting Derek Reidle, publisher of civilized media. Derek was gracious enough to have a brief conversation with me and offer advice/insight on how to progress faster towards success in the business. I look up to Derek professionally and am a big fan of what Civilized publishes, so I was pumped to get in touch with him. His accessibility and willingness to share advice freely speaks volumes to the genuine nature of this industry, and the people involved within it.
The way I met Bruce Linton was perfectly symptomatic of the other aspect of this industry that is seemingly unavoidable … the breakneck pace at which we’re all operating right now! Within 5-10 minutes I’d met, photographed, and “had lunch” with the man himself. I say “have lunch” … and by that I mean his assistant handed him a sandwich which he promptly demolished in ten seconds, while we chatted before his panel presentation. A fair amount of other people jumped in to pitch him on the next best thing … it was kind of wild to experience that type of magnetism first hand.. At one point I hear even Mr. Gertner walked up and asked Bruce to buy out Hiku …. Just kidding 🙂
One common refrain I heard at the show was a mixture of curiosity and concern … will things be the same next year or change drastically? A few speculated that once things are fully legal and the industry accelerates at an unrecognizable pace – will the same expo vibes, and small town type friendliness prevail, or will it become super corporate and “stuffy”. One thing is for sure, I had a lot great encounters and met a lot of really cool people … hopefully not too much changes in the calendar year because I’m already looking forward to the 2019 version!