Town asks for clarification on smoke shop sign

 Cannabis, Harassment, History, In the News, Legalization, The Chad  Comments Off on Town asks for clarification on smoke shop sign
Nov 082016
 
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The Chad Smokeshop 420 was not always welcomed with open arms.

This undated article from sometime in early 2010 highlights some of the difficulties The Chad Smokeshop 420 faced in the beginning…

by LAUREN DEN HARTOG
ADVOCATE STAFF

The Town of Athabasca’s Municipal Planning Commission (MPC) has asked for more information regarding a sign for the Chad Smokeshop 420, located on 49th Street, before granting a permit to owner Chad Wentworth.

Wentworth told the Advocate that the sign would include the name and logo of his store, which opened on Friday.

The Chad 420 logo in question

The Chad 420 logo in question

At the town’s MPC meeting on Tuesday night, Mayor Colleen Powell asked if the town could legitimately ask for changes to what Wentworth wanted on his sign .

“It’s sending a message that most people in the community don’t want sent,” said Powell , of the fact that ‘420’, a reference to April 20, Cannabis Day, would appear on the sign.

“My understanding is that it was chosen in place of a marijuana leaf,” said councillor Christine Nelson.

Powell told council that she had received several phone calls from concerned residents about the new store.

“Everything that is sold is legal, absolutely, but there is some concern that this is promoting drug use among young people. Whether or not this is true, that is the message that is coming to me,” she said .”I would prefer on the sign, that it would just say ‘smoke shop.”’

But chief administrative officer Doug Topinka pointed out that ‘420’ was part of the company name.

“It’s a small town and is this something we want sold in our community?” asked councillor Lionel Cherniwchan, who said the new store was different from having a massage parlor opening in town.

“Would I want a massage parlor adjacent to the building, probably no.”

Council also discussed granting a change of use for the store, which was formerly a clothing store.

“I kind of like dress shops. Why do we have to pass a change of use?” asked councillor Roger Morrill before asking if council could get legal advice on the matter .

“Basically this is a shop selling cigarettes. The actual paraphernalia is at the back of the store,” said councillor Christine Nelson.

Council did grant a change of use on the building, however, the motion to grant a sign permit for the new store was tabled until the next MPC meeting.

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Smoke shop cleared

 History, In the News, The Chad  Comments Off on Smoke shop cleared
Oct 312016
 
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By: Victoria Handysides
Mar. 3, 2009

A county councillor has given the green light to a new crop of pot gear pushers that have moved into town, applauding efforts to smokescreen products from children.

Chad Wentworth, the owner of the newly opened Chad Smokeshop 420 in the Baseline Crossing shopping centre, poses with some of his extensive inventory. He also has stores in Olds, Leduc, and Brooks, Alta. County councillors are giving him no hassle, as he prohibits minors from entering his store and has frosted glass on his storefront.

Chad Wentworth, the owner of the newly opened Chad Smokeshop 420 in the Baseline Crossing shopping centre, poses with some of his extensive inventory. He also has stores in Olds, Leduc, and Brooks, Alta. County councillors are giving him no hassle, as he prohibits minors from entering his store and has frosted glass on his storefront.

The frosted windows of The Chad Smokeshop 420 combined with strict legal age enforcement and a location on Sherwood Park’s main commercial drag are enough to make narcotic naysayer Coun. Jason Gariepy nod in approval.

“In an ideal world, there would be no need for drug paraphernalia,” he said. “But, seeing that those products are legal, if there is a way for those items to be sold, this is probably the best way.”

Gariepy recently publicly bashed a Sherwood Park convenience store pushing pipes and bongs along with Slurpees, magazines and candy.

The pot leaf emblazoned shop is in close proximity to two schools and advertises smoking accessories on a roadside sign. Owners admittedly sell pipes to teenagers 16 and older, and operate a Facebook page befriended predominantly by teens.

Gariepy is exploring legal implications of a brewing bylaw proposal that, if passed, will restrict the sale of drug paraphernalia within close proximity to schools, arenas and transit stations.

“I’m very opposed to pipe and bong stores being disguised as neighbourhood convenience stores,” Coun. Gariepy said. “If you’re a standalone store, follow good business practices and restrict access to kids that’s appropriate.”

The Park’s newest head shop was designed with discretion, owners said.

“We didn’t want to interfere with anyone,” said owner Chad Wentworth. “We went about it in a professional way. We’re not just some cheap store that threw some products in it hoping to make it.”

All employees at each of Wentworth’s four Alberta stores take Alberta Tobacco Act tests before starting work, he added.

Gariepy’s proposal to council will likely be ready within 30 days, he said.

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