Let’s Talk Cannabis | A Senior Center Class

By Kaitlyn M.
Senior citizens are looking to benefit from weed like the rest of us, but a lack of knowledge is holding them back. Now a California dispensary is looking to help those in serious need of some a marijuana education.

As more states start legalizing marijuana, classes are being introduced that teach people about it. When I think about classes that teach people about marijuana, I think more about the younger crowd. However, there is a new class catering towards a different kind of crowd- senior citizens.

Senior Citizens Want to Learn About Cannabis?

Yes! You may think that senior citizens are the “prudes” who think down on those who smoke marijuana, but this isn’t always the case. There have been studies done that show the increase of senior citizen marijuana users.


One study showed that marijuana use in those 65 or older increased by 250 percent from 2006-2013. That can only mean that percentages have only increased since then. But there are many senior citizens who want to try it, but don’t know what to get or how to use it properly- that is where cannabis workshops come in.

Cannabis Workshops for The Elderly

Eli Melrod is the co-founder and chief executive of Solful Dispensary, located in Sebastopol, California. Melrod understands that many senior citizens are curious about cannabis and want to understand it better. He says, “One-third of our customers are 60 plus. We kind of designed it with that demographic in mind.”

And for that reason, Melrod was asked to have a “Let’s Talk About Cannabis” workshop at the Sebastopol Senior Center this past Friday. Katie Davis, who is the director of the senior center, wanted this to happen because the seniors requested it themselves. Davis says, “They are always just very interested and it’s always a topic of conversation”.

When the workshop started, the first two rows were filled fast, and the room was eventually packed full with 40 or so people. While it is not surprising that people want to understand cannabis better, why are senior citizens so intrigued?

What Do Senior Citizens Want from Marijuana?

Senior citizens want the same thing that most people want from marijuana- to ease pain and relax. People like Becky Wade age 62 and her 93-year-old mother want to learn how weed can help with their sleepless nights. Wade says she hasn’t smoked since the 70’s but feels positive about taking the workshop.


Others are actually wanting to understand more about strains and join the business for financial benefits. Steve Perdue age 65 is trying to do just that by visiting the workshop. He says “We are all in kindergarten,” when it comes to understanding about cannabis but he is excited about the prospect of “supplemental income”.

It is honestly no surprise to me that senior citizens are wanting to understand cannabis better. Some of them used to smoke but they know very little about the strains that are available today and what they can do for their pains. I think it is great that dispensaries like Melrod’s are diving in to teach people like Wade and Perdue who want to learn.

Hopefully, the cannabis workshop for senior citizens will be available throughout the U.S. so everyone can benefit from dispensaries knowledge.


1. Cannabis Workshop draws big crowd at senior center. Retrieved January 16, 2018 from http://www.sonomawest.com/sonoma_west_times_and_news/news/cannabis-workshop-draws-big-crowd-at-senior-center/article_11dfb15a-fa1a-11e7-abc6-f717e065cef1.html

2. Why Is Marijuana Use Among Seniors on the Rise?. Retrieved January 16, 2018 from https://www.healthline.com/health-news/why-are-more-seniors-using-marijuana#2

3. As Doctors See Benefits of Medical Marijuana Treatments for Seniors, Calls for Changes in Policy. Retrieved January 16, 2018 from https://www.nbcnews.com/nightly-news/video/as-doctors-see-benefits-of-medical-marijuana-treatments-for-seniors-calls-for-changes-in-policy-895834691711

About the author: Kaitlyn M.

Kaitlyn is one of our regular contributors to cover Products and Lifestyle. She's living in the palmy Florida.