CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) - Illinoisans are just a couple weeks away from legally buying medical marijuana, and FOX 32 got an exclusive look inside the first dispensary that will open in the Chicago area.
Just next week, approved patients will start receiving their prescription cards and in two weeks, a dispensary in Mundelein is scheduled to open up.
There are only four dispensaries in the state of Illinois that are licensed and ready to open: Mundelein, Canton, Quincy and Marion.
The Clinic Mundelein is the first medical marijuana dispensary that will open in northern Illinois, north of I-80.
“It has been a long time coming, we have been working on this for well over a year, probably close to two years,” said CEO of The Clinic Mundelein Ben Kovler.
You may have seen images of dispensaries in Colorado, glass jars lined up labeled with whimsical names, but Illinois dispensaries are going to look a little more reserved.
“This is not Cheech and Chong, this is not a head shop, this is a medical facility to help patients who are in need,” said Kovler.
FOX 32's cameras are currently not allowed inside the dispensary due to state regulations, but facility owners are allowed to take and share pictures.
So, we now know what an Illinois dispensary will look like, complete with comfy couches and warm colors.
“We wanted patients to feel comfortable, to be here, to spend time here,” said Kovler. “They spend a lot of their time in medical clinics and medical offices and doctor’s offices, that is not what this is.”
Comfortable and safe, almost every inch of the facility is covered by security cameras.
Another dispensary under construction in Lake county, PDI Medical, will open next month. They are starting this month with a licensing event this weekend in Deerfield.
“Open our doors, before we open our doors,” said CEO of PDI Medical Joseph Friedman. “Allow patients to come in, ask questions to become registered, certified to take their passport photos, to provide information.”
With a card, patients will be able to buy everything from topical creams to edibles.
Kovler says they are harvesting at his cultivation center in Rock Island and will soon be shipping the first supply.
“The product is ready at the cultivation center, the store is approved, the patients are ready, they need to get their cards,” said Kovler.
The state is supposed to be shipping the cards next week.
You can find a complete list of dispensaries that will be the first to open in Illinois at this link!