By Guest Editor
Last week, 20,000+ people descended on the Entertainment Capital of the World for what was unofficially dubbed "Cannabis Week." During a week that included Marijuana Business Daily’s MJBizCon, the world’s largest cannabis business conference, and numerous industry events, Las Vegas was blossoming with professionals high on flower power.
On Wednesday, House of Puff and MAISON BLOOM, with support from Flowerhire, AlphaRoot, and Eybna Technologies, hosted a diverse crowd of cannabis industry leaders, influencers, innovators, and icons for the inaugural “KIKI at the COPA” event. The KIKI event series is a unique series of pop-up experiences from coast to coast that deliver surprise and delight for a wide variety of cannabis enthusiasts.
"MAISON BLOOM has teamed up with House of Puff for our KIKI series because of our shared understanding of the power of making spaces for gathering,” said Jake Wall, Chief Innovation Officer of MAISON BLOOM. “Now more than ever, a space that is specifically curated to draw our leading cannabis luminaries together serves to inspire us, delightfully, to be more hopeful, more purposeful, and more thoughtful together. And when all of this comes together with our signature hospitality, we all leave a little more 'alive' than when we walked in.”
In Las Vegas, quintessential Copa showgirls greeted guests as they entered the Velveteen Rabbit, a swanky cocktail bar in the downtown arts district. The event, which was originally slated for 100 attendees, was met with incredible interest and word of mouth growing to over 200+ VIPs. All the guests relished the respite from the adrenaline overload of "The Strip" and the chance to network with a carefully curated group of industry leaders.
"We actually had to do a full venue buy-out 36 hours before the event due to tremendous interest," said Sloane Barbour of Flowerhire.
Co-sponsors Honeysuckle, Oasis Intelligence, and Endo Industries were on hand with their networks, resulting in a cross-section of the industry’s most compelling people. Guests included Michael Thompson, one of the country’s longest-serving cannabis prisoners; Mary Bailey, Managing Director of the restorative justice nonprofit Last Prisoner Project (LPP) and LPP advisory board member Stephanie Shepard; Ted Anastasiou, Senior Vice President of Mercury LLC (and former counsel to the New York State Department of Financial Services); Lauren Eisman, founder of wellness brand Her Highness; Clif Loftin of Platinum Citizen Group; Tariq Tongue of Flower One, Nevada’s largest cannabis operator; Justin Johnson, founder of media and community platform BudsFeed; and Charlotte Underwood and Geraldine Hessler of Rebelle, the women-led dispensary chain taking the East Coast by storm.
“It seemed like a place of love,” Michael Thompson said of Vegas’ Cannabis Week and the KIKI at the COPA event. “Ronit [Pinto] and Sam [Long of Honeysuckle] are genuine people. I felt comfortable at the event. The crowd was very welcoming… When I speak to anybody, I speak from one heart to another heart. And hopefully that’s what they felt in Vegas. That’s what all the young people were telling me they felt.”
Attendees were treated to a true taste of the KIKI signature high society experience with signature cannabis beverage tasting flight from MAISON BLOOM’s flight crew as well as complimentary House of Puff pre-rolls alongside artisanal cocktails, hors d'oeuvres, and well-heeled takeout boxes filled with swag.
For more information on the upcoming KIKI event series, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Featured image: House of Puff founder Kristina Lopez Adduci (center) with MAISON BLOOM CEO Nathan Johnson (right) and Director of Brand & Marketing Tony Sananikone (left), flanked by Copa Girls outside The Velveteen Rabbit. (C) Sam C. Long / Honeysuckle Media, Inc.