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Oasis out to break marijuana stereotypes

Sherrena Jenkins, Benjamin Figueroa, Matthew Mallett, Patrick Gump, Mia Clinton and Palmer Baldwin.

Photo by Emily Mentzer
Sherrena Jenkins, Benjamin Figueroa, Matthew Mallett, Patrick Gump, Mia Clinton and Palmer Baldwin.

MONMOUTH — Oasis Cannabis in Monmouth is ready to break the pothead stereotype.

“We want to remove the stigma from pot, and introduce ourselves and educate our community,” said Benjamin Figueroa. “There’s the word ‘stoner,’ but we actually provide medication. We provide a service to the community. That would be my favorite part (about this business), taking away the stigma about marijuana that isn’t necessarily true.”

Manager Patrick Gump agreed.

“Having experience in other dispensaries and budtending, our greatest asset are the people who come in and see us,” he said. “They usually come in wanting something, wanting to find a little bit of peace and happiness, and knowing we get to be a part of finding their happiness and finding them something that will make their life a little more enjoyable, something that will be a benefit to them.”

The business had a soft opening on May 20 during the annual Monmouth-Independence Chamber of Commerce’s Discover MI Town, and took the opportunity to show people around the shop — including families.

Figueroa said Oasis prides itself on its curb appeal.

“We’re not trying to hide anything,” he said. “We’re trying to be part of the community and let them know we’re here. We’re here to help you and educate you.”

“I have extreme passion about the cannabis industry, everything, all the way from processing at the cannabis plant to the flower and seeds and everything,” Gump said. “This plant is magic.”

The cannabis shop offers both recreational and medical-grade products, from flower to edibles — and will begin selling clones — or marijuana plant starts, and seeds. It also offers a variety of methods to consume the products, from handblown glass pipes by MJ’s Glass & Vape, out of Salem, to infusers.

Monmouth is the third location for Oasis, and Gump said they’ve learned a few things about the business through their first two stores, one in Seaside and one in Newberg.

“We have a fantastic crew out here,” Gump said. “It’s been a lot of heart, a lot of work. We’ve also learned from our past stores, so we really expect this to be the leader of the community as far as cannabis goes.”

One of their goals in helping to break the stigma is by sharing research-based information, Matthew Mallett said.

“It’s natural,” he said. “We’re not synthesizing it from anything. Pharmaceutical companies do more work than we do.”

Mia Clinton said that she saw great improvements in her patients that used cannabis when she was a certified nursing assistant.

“I like helping people,” she said. “I want to give them something healthy, something that’s not going to give you this side effect, or take something away. It’s not going to kill you, and you’re not going to die from this.”

With two veterans on staff — Gump and Palmer Baldwin — Oasis offers veterans discounts.

The Monmouth City Council had considered banning marijuana shops in the Main Street District, but decided to allow it at the end. Gump said he is grateful for that decision and the warm welcome he has gotten from Mayor Steve Milligan and city councilors.

“We understand the 360 that took place and are very grateful for it,” he said.

Oasis Cannabis is at 221 Main St. E., Monmouth. Hours are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Sunday.

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