Local mountain and Norse god inspired these Nakusp cannapreneurs

A cannabis plant. (From Kelowna Capital News)

A cannabis plant. (From Kelowna Capital News)

Residents of Nakusp will no longer have to drive nearly two hours to pick up their recreational marijuana.

The village’s very own pot shop — Mount Odin Cannabis — will be opening up by the end of August, says one of the store’s owners.

“We’re basically nearing the last stages here,” says Chelsea Potter. “Once some shipments come in, we can do our final inspection — we have a fellow coming in to do that. And once he gives his final stamp of approval that everything’s up to code, we’ll be able to order our product and open!”

Potter and her partner, Colin Hanet, first came to Nakusp about two years ago and fell in love with the place. They also saw the opportunity for a cannabis store in Nakusp. They began renting a location — 312 Broadway — and working to receive provincial and federal approvals for the store.

The name ‘Mount Odin Cannabis’ was chosen to reflect the community and nature that surrounds it, she says.

“The name was inspired by the mountain that’s local, and the mythological backstory, my partner really likes that, so we wanted to encompass that as well,” says Potter.

Things didn’t seem to move much from there, which recently prompted two other business people in town to ask council to change the rules to allow them to run a retail cannabis store. Under Village bylaws, only one cannabis retailer is allowed in town at present. That rule was set after public consultations indicated residents only wanted one cannabis shop in town at the most.

Potter says things were only quiet on the surface.

“We were keeping it quiet because it was a very long process for us, and we weren’t entirely sure as we went forward if we were going to get all the final approvals,” she says. “As we kind of have now, and we’re in the final stages, we were able to make a public announcement on our Facebook and Instagram pages and we are letting people know we are here, and we are getting ready to open.”

Potter says they want to make the store a pleasant experience for locals who want recreational cannabis.

“We’re using the beauty that surrounds us,” she says. “We have nice live-edge wood, plant life, river rock we have available in the area. We’ll also have a feature art wall. We reached out to local artists about having an art display on one of our walls, to give artists a space to showcase their work without having to worry about gallery fees.”

Being the only cannabis shop in at least a 90-minute drive will help give the couple a fairly sizeable catchment area, from New Denver to Edgewood to Galena Bay, as well as provide product for visitors to the area.

— John Boivin, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter