“Thank you to the Nipissing First Nation community for saying ‘yes’ to allow this”
Zachary Lacelle, owner of Northern Zen Cannabis wasn’t sure what to expect on the opening weekend of his new business.
The recreational cannabis dispensary is located on Osprey Miikan on Nipissing First Nations, just off Highway 17, west of North Bay.
“It is going pretty good. I just hope that the community supports local business,” said Lacelle.
“I was one of eight to receive a licence when Ontario did a second lottery. I didn’t get to open first here, but I was the first aboriginal licence holder in Ontario. That is something to be proud of. ”
Northern Zen Cannabis is the third such store to open on that stretch of road.
“After the lottery was done and all the names were said, a couple months later the rest of the waiting list of aboriginal people was opened. Hence the other two stores beside me now,” said Lacelle.
“The first to open was Kana Leaf. It already had a building. The other store, Cheerful Charlie’s had a store and gas bar. I was before them in the lottery but I did not have a choice when it came to opening because I had no hydro.”
It took nearly seven months just to get the power connected to his property.
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