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Numerous CBD shops have opened in the past year in the Milwaukee area, but we rolled into the city’s first, Erth Dispensary, to check out its Bud Bar.
The Bud Bar is basically a couple of stools at the end of a counter, but that’s all ya need to choose the right hemp flowers and sample your purchase.
Erth Dispensary has about 16 or so different kinds of hemp flowers in jars. Although it looks and smells like marijuana, CBD flowers do not contain THC, the ingredient in weed that creates the "head buzz" feeling.
Thus, people don’t smoke CBD to get high, but rather to alleviate stress, anxiety, insomnia and muscle or joint pain among other ailments. "Everyone is different," says Erth co-owner Jason Ranic. "For me, it was a life changer."
Ranic, who suffers from A Fib and high blood pressure, started using CBD and this month has been off his pharmaceutical medications for a year.
Hemp flowers are sold by the joint ($10), gram ($10), 1/8 ounce ($30) or 1/4 ounce ($50). To purchase any CBD products in the store – or even to enter – people must have ID and be at least 18 years old.
It had been a while since I smoked anything and it was the middle of the day, so I asked Ranic and manager Cole Compton for something that would make me more alert rather than relaxed. They recommended the Cat’s Meow or the Elektra, so I went with the latter just because the name appealed to me more. (Nothing against cats or their meows, of course.)
After a few drags of the joint, co-owner Jennifer Kawczynski asked me if I "felt anything." I didn't feel stoned or altered, but everything looked a bit sharper and I got extra smiley. I would like to try a "relaxing" strain sometime because I do suffer from insomnia occasionally. I was also relieved that I didn't feel any anxiety after smoking the CBD joint as I have in the past when smoking a "real" one.
For people interested in experiencing pain or anxiety relief but aren’t interested in lighting up, tinctures, edibles (candy, cold brew coffee), topical ointments and patches are available. Erth Dispensary also has a line of bath and pet products, along with non-CBD munchie food.
Erth Dispensary will open a second location next month in Cedarburg, so stay tuned to OnMilwaukee for more information about the new shop as it becomes available. For now, belly up to the Bud Bar via this Facebook Live:
Molly Snyder grew up on Milwaukee's East Side and today, she lives in the Walker's Point neighborhood with her partner and two sons.
As a full time senior writer, editorial manager and self-described experience junkie, Molly has written thousands of articles about Milwaukee (and a few about New Orleans, Detroit, Indianapolis, Boston and various vacation spots in Wisconsin) that range in subject from where to get the best cup of coffee to an in-depth profile on the survivors of the iconic Norman apartment building that burned down in the '90s.
She also once got a colonic just to report on it, but that's enough on that.
Always told she had a "radio voice," Molly found herself as a regular contributor on FM102, 97WMYX and 1130WISN with her childhood radio favorite, Gene Mueller.
Molly's poetry, essays and articles appeared in many publications including USA Today, The Writer, The Sun Magazine and more. She has a collection of poetry, "Topless," and is slowly writing a memoir.
In 2009, Molly won a Milwaukee Press Club Award. She served as the Narrator / writer-in-residence at the Pfister Hotel from 2013-2014. She is also a story slam-winning storyteller who has performed with The Moth, Ex Fabula and Risk!
When she's not writing, interviewing or mom-ing, Molly teaches tarot card classes, gardens, sits in bars drinking Miller products and dreams of being in a punk band again.