A new legal holiday gift this season in Illinois: Cannabis – Herald & Review

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General manager Gregory Zeman organizes packaged edible cannabis products for display at Rise Dispensaries, 9621 N. Milwaukee Ave. Nov. 24, 2020, in Niles. The company is holding a “Green Wednesday/Friday” sale, which includes discounts on select edibles.

John J. Kim / Chicago Tribune Alexia Elejalde-Ruiz Chicago Tribune

Shoppers mourning the demise of Black Friday can celebrate the birth of another shopping holiday: Green Wednesday, when the legal weed industry offers discounts on everything from joints to edibles to cannabis-infused taco seasoning for the stoner who has everything.

Green Wednesday, which takes place the day before Thanksgiving, has been around for several years in other states but is making its debut in Illinois during the state’s first year of legal recreational marijuana sales.

It comes as people prepare for a strange and perhaps lonely Thanksgiving, with many canceling plans to gather with friends or family amid stark warnings from health officials to avoid spreading COVID-19.

“People not traveling may be looking for an escape,” said Jason Erkes, chief communications officer at Chicago-based Cresco Labs, which has eight recreational cannabis dispensaries in Illinois.

Marijuana dispensaries offer discounts here and there, but industrywide sales events are infrequent, Erkes said. Promotions tend to be tied to celebrations of cannabis culture on April 20 (420 is slang for getting high) and cannabis concentrates on July 10 (710 is “oil” spelled backward, sort of).

“To have everyone target one day really provides a lot of focus and attention on the retailers across the state and gives consumers an opportunity to stock up for the holiday,” Erkes said.

Last year, Green Wednesday racked up sales that were 40% greater than the average sales

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