Asheville is no stranger to the increase in popularity of cannabidiol (CBD) that is taking the country by storm. CBD is a naturally-occurring constituent of cannabis that does not have intoxicating effects like those caused by THC — the psychoactive chemical found in cannabis that gives you a “high” feeling. And while more and more CBD shops are opening their doors in the Asheville area, one shop is making sure to stand out among the crowd: Asheville Dispensary.
Part of what makes the 919 Haywood Road icon different from other area CBD outlets is the unique “Wellness Lounge” aspect that owner Jimmy Gallagher created in late 2018.
“We wanted to go beyond the typical pharmacy-type store and have a wide-open place where people could feel comfortable hanging out, enjoying a non-alcoholic beverage, and learning about cannabis and other herbs that can make you feel good in a safe, legal and healthy way,” Gallagher said. He believes Asheville is made up of many truly unique people, and he wanted to give those people a place where they can relax and unwind.
“The feedback from the community has been great,” he said. “The testimonials from our customers on the inflammation, anxiety and pain relief they have received from the various hemp extract products is rewarding to our whole staff.”
As a result, the largest CBD store in town has blossomed into a valuable community space for locals and tourists alike to discover plant medicine and “Feel Better Now!” as their tagline proclaims.
And with their Herbal Elixir Bar, curated by The NOHM Project, they’ve made delicious, expertly-crafted health drinks available seven days a week. Their seasonally-shifting menu, like each beverage it contains, is a work of art. “We just launched our new Autumn/Winter menu, and all of the drinks are gorgeous,” mentioned Bar Manager Lauren Bruhn. (Visit the store, or its website, to view the new menu!)
Gallagher became passionate about CBD when it changed his life for the better. “CBD has helped me in several ways,” Gallagher, who is a veteran, said. “One particular way being with inflammation in my stomach lining.”
He said he has also noticed wide-reaching beneficial results that CBD products were having on his friends and family. “So, I decided I wanted to help bring the benefits of the cannabis plant to my community,” the store’s founder continued.
Gallagher mentioned one customer in particular that stood out to him.
“We had a veteran come in with a non-malignant tumor in his neck and buy a CBD topical salve from a company we carry,” he said. “He came back to thank us two days later, after seeing a noticeable reduction in the size of the tumor.”
Fresh off celebrating their 1-year “Hempiversary,” the local CBD pioneers at Asheville Dispensary are firing up new events to help keep WNC happy and healthy. While they show no signs of stopping their popular monthly happenings like CannaComedy, Cacao Night Owl and the Herb of the Month Club, they’re adding a new Vinyasa Flow Yoga series, and they’ve just launched something big.
"The Asheville Hemp Market is something we created to support local growers and hempcrafters who don't have a brick-and-mortar store presence," said the dispensary’s Director of Marketing, Ray Straub. "We want to help them get their healing products out to the people in our local community. And we want to help our neighbors feel better. The Hemp Market facilitates that connection, so everybody wins.” Straub continued, “That's always our goal. We're all in this together."
On November 3rd, the first Asheville Hemp Market took place inside the 2300 sq. ft. dispensary, and plans are underway to move the Market outdoors come spring, more than doubling the number of vendors featured. Straub added, “We’ll constantly rotate the companies we invite, so there will always be something interesting and new for locals to come out and discover.”
The next Market will fill the store on Saturday, Dec. 14th from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., so if you’re a local hemp grower or maker of CBD products, contact the Asheville Dispensary now to get a spot! And whether you’re an active CBD enthusiast or simply interested in learning more, mark your calendar, as representatives from all attending vendors will be on hand to discuss the products they’re selling and how they make them. Plus you’ll get to try free samples!
You can experience the incredibly chill vibe and invigorating range of elixirs and CBD products that Asheville Dispensary has to offer on every day of the week. The shop often features live music and special events in addition to its recurring roster of happenings. Learn more about Asheville Dispensary and their upcoming events on their Dig Local profile.