Saskatoon

Pot protesters crash Tweed opening in downtown Saskatoon, give away free joints

Protesters crashed the opening of the Tweed pot store in downtown Saskatoon and handed out free joints. The store took over the spot that once housed a medical dispensary.

Tweed official says the company is 'pro-peaceful protest'

Protestors marshalling to hand out free joints at the Tweed pot store opening. (CBC)

Opening day for Saskatoon's latest recreational pot outlet — a Tweed store at 143 2nd Avenue N. — featured a free joint giveaway on the sidewalk in front of the downtown store.

The catch is that it was not a promotion — it was a protest.

"This originally used to be a medical cannabis dispensary by the name of Best Buds," said Sterling Wilde, one of the protest organizers.

"Best Buds was pushed out by Tweed, as well some unhappy community folk. Now they're opening a store here and we have a big problem with that because one of the main ingredients in cannabis medication, in cannabis itself, is love."

Sterling Wilde is not pleased a retail outlet replaced the Best Buds medical dispensary. (CBC)

Wilde and a handful of fellow activists showed up with lawnchairs, a sign and baggies full of pre-rolled joints to give away.

The cannabis is local and organically grown and is a mix of two strains, WiFi OG and Berlin crossed with Cheese, he said.

"By doing the corporate way and the way that they push out the cannabis and the way that they treat it, they're pushing the plant to do something that it's not meant to do," he said.

Margo Mulatsa says Tweed is "pro-peaceful protest." (CBC)

Tweed staff were aware of the protest unfolding outside the store glass windows. They seemed more amused than upset.

"We at Tweed, we are pro-peaceful protest. Everybody has a right to have an opinion and to have an ability to speak freely," said Margo Mulatsa, the district sales manager for Saskatchewan and Alberta.

"Just like the protesters outside, we wouldn't be here without activists and protesters in the past. We have some people that have been on the first line of activism and pioneers of promoting cannabis. So we're very happy they're here."

At one point, police came by and checked out the giveaway but then left without ordering the protesters to leave.

Tweed is the retail arm of Canopy Growth Corporation, an Ontario-based leader in Canada's cannabis industry.

The Second Avenue Tweed store replaces Cannabis YXE.

Tweed, in a press release last week, dubbed it a "rebranded" store.

About the Author

Dan Zakreski is a reporter for CBC Saskatoon.

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