CannaHelp holds open house, rally today

January 18, 2007

K. Kaufmann, The Desert Sun

The doors at CannaHelp will be wide open today, but the medical marijuana dispenary at 73-350 El Paseo will not be selling any of its usual products. The dispensary is holding an open house beginning around 10 a.m. today, to give patients and the public an inside look. Medical marijuana advocates are also holding rally between 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. at the dispensary, where area patients are expected to talk about their current problems obtaining medical marijuana.

"We’re hoping that the local officials will recognize the need (for dispensaries)," said Ryan Michaels, one of the volunteers keeping CannaHelp open. "I want them to take a stand."

CannaHelp is one of two Coachella Valley dispensaries that have closed or stopped selling medical marijuana in the past week.

The Collective Apothecary of Palm Springs closed last week. CannaHelp stopped selling the drug Monday, due to staff and inventory problems following felony charges the Riverside County District Attorney filed against owner Stacy Hochanadel and managers John Bednar and James Campbell.

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