Published on October 15, 2018 by David Trifunov

Where, oh where, will it be?

Airport Way?

Downtown at Pandosy Street and Lawrence Avenue?

Those are our latest guesses for where the first Kelowna cannabis store will be located.

However, we think Lake Country will be first to the gate.

We’d love to see a government store built at Orchard Park mall, in the parking lot. A standalone location across from the Dilworth government liquor store, where the Telus demonstration home sat, would be perfect.

Our two cents.

– Updated Nov. 22. by the oz.

Back in October 2017…

We took an early educated guess at the yet-to-be-determined location of Kelowna’s first legal marijuana retail store.

Kelowna entrepreneur Trent Kitsch turned heads late in 2017 when he opened Doja Culture Cafe.

Although more than a year ahead of legalization, it appeared the man behind Saxx Underwear and Kitsch Wines was making a play to become the first in the recreational cannabis space.

Turns out, he was a little too early for the City of Kelowna, which has a long list of stipulations on where pot shops will be allowed.

Early bird gets the… NOPE! 

City of Kelowna spokesman Tom Wilson told the oz. that those early established locations won’t necessarily have any special privileges.

“Doja, for example, does not get a head start because its current location is not permitted (too close to Kerry Park),” Wilson said in an email.

So where will Kelowna’s first cannabis cafe, head shop or pot stop be? You can study the city’s map to try and guess, but right now it’s just that — guess work.

“(There’s) no sense yet of preferred locations or vendors,” Wilson told the oz. in an email.

If it’s prime real estate near the lake you want for your tourism- or recreational-based business (and why wouldn’t you?), you may have to leave downtown.

There’s almost nothing along Okanagan Lake in the heart of Kelowna until you hit Hotel Eldorado, Playa Del Sol and Manteo Resort to the south.

The triangular shapes along the shoreline are the closest you’ll get to lakeside exposure.

Oh boy, we’re gonna guess!

Predicting where Kelowna’s first recreational pot will go on sale is all about educated guesswork.

Taking this into account and using our wonderful powers of deduction, we believe the Lakeshore and Cook roads area will be the first place to go to pot.

Here’s our disclaimer: We have no advanced intelligence that says someone wants to sell cannabis there. Weighing the criteria of where pot shops can — and cannot — open, it seems like a prime location.

For those wanting to gaze into their own crystal ball, here are the pot shop boundaries as a way to narrow it down:

  • Minimum 500 metres between pot shops
  • Minimum 150 m from select parks
  • Minimum 150 m from elementary schools
  • Minimum 500 m from middle and secondary schools
– DAVE TRIFUNOV
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