Mary Ann Blackwell (center) smokes marijuana out of a vaporizer during the East Bay Senior Social Club at the Magnolia Dispensary on Friday, Aug. 18, 2017, in Oakland, Calif. SOURCE: Santiago Mejia
Although seniors are the fastest growing demographic of cannabis consumers, they’re also a group that often faces isolation and shame from medical professionals, family or friends for using marijuana. One Northern California group, the East Bay Senior Cannabis Social Club, is trying to change that.
On Friday Aug. 18, the 50-plus member club met at Oakland’s Magnolia Wellness, a licensed dispensary with a large lounge. About 30 seniors showed up, chatted, snacked on tomato basil mozzarella skewers, finger sandwiches, and cookies, sipped juice and sweet tea and took turns hitting communal cannabis vaporizers — and it didn’t take long for a smoky haze to fill Magnolia’s private, purple-walled vaping room.
While some of the seniors smoked cannabis just for the fun of it, most of them were using the plant to treat arthritis, anxiety or pain.