Colorado reports a total of 508 medical marijuana centers and 408 retail stores in the state, some of which overlap, but until the opening of Simply Pure, none were owned by African-Americans. Wanda James and husband Scott Durrah run the Denver-area medical and recreational store, which is 81% owned by African-Americans and opens its doors to recreational patients on December 7th.
James and Durrah, a renowned chef, own and operate the nearby restaurant Jezebel’s Southern Bar and Bistro and previously owned a medical dispensary, The Apothecary of Colorado, which opened in 2009. The couple operated Simply Pure as an edibles company, one of the first to use real chefs in a commercial kitchen, from 2010-2013.
James was a Lieutenant in the U.S. Navy and later worked as a political strategist and consultant. Ladybud Magazine described Durrah as a “trailblazer in the world of cannabis culinary techniques.”
The company issued a press release to announce the opening of Simply Pure:
SIMPLY PURE DISPENSARY, COLORADO’S FIRST BLACK OWNED AND OPERATED DISPENSARY, TO OPEN FOR RECREATIONAL SALES
DENVER, COLORADO – On Monday, December 7, 2015, the iconic Simply Pure will be back in business. This time, not as an edible company, but as a dispensary.
In 2009, Wanda James and Scott Durrah opened the Apothecary of Colorado (AOC). They were the first African Americans licensed in Colorado to own a dispensary. The AOC became famous for the edibles they produced and the cooking classes that Durrah held at his downtown restaurant, 8 Rivers. Because of their passion for food and cannabis the couple sold the dispensary and opened Simply Pure Medicated Edibles to rave reviews. Simply Pure serviced over 450 dispensaries and one hospice program. The high demand for real food and not just sugar laden candy, offered a market niche that Simply Pure was happy to fill.
Simply Pure Medicated Edibles became the model for edible legislation in Colorado. They were the first Manufacturer of Infused Products (MIP) to build their own grow facility, cook with 100% flower, not trim, guaranteed consistency and potency, and operated out for a commercial kitchen with all highly trained chefs. By growing their own cannabis, they could ensure that final product was free of pesticides and 100% organic. The products were vegan, gluten free and organic.
Simply Pure closed after the market demanded low priced and extremely high potency edibles. Simply Pure was not interested in producing a lower quality product, so they closed their doors in anticipation of full legalization and a larger consumer market.
“The Simply Pure brand is Colorado. Not only have we been known for the quality we put into our products and business, but Scott and I have been at the forefront of fighting for this industry since 2009. We are happy to see this industry continue to grow. We are thankful to be a part of the cannabis history of Colorado and we are excited to create a new dispensary that will be a jewel in the LoHi neighborhood,” states James.
The couple has been featured in numerous shows and documentaries including The Daily Show, “Gone to Pot”, the 2010 CNBC Documentary, “Marijuana USA” and the CBS Sunday Morning, “The Dope On Cannabis Cuisine”
Most recently, they were featured in The Atlantic documentary, American Dreams.
The Simply Pure Recreational Grand Opening will begin Monday when the doors open at 11:00am at 2000 W. 32nd Ave., Denver, CO 80211. The festivities be an all week event with vendors on hand each day to give out promotional items BOGO, discounts and Give-A-Ways.
Our Grand Opening Week will feature:
MONDAY – Viola Extracts & Wana Edibles
TUESDAY – Keef Cola & Oil Stix
WEDNESDAY – Craft 710 & Highly Edibles
THURSDAY – ALL Dixie Edibles & Concentrates
FRIDAY – OpenVape & Cheeba Chews
SATURDAY – Mary’s Medicinals & Julie’s Baked Natural Edibles
SUNDAY – Incredibles & ApotheCanna
ABOUT SIMPLY PURE
WHAT: Simply Pure Dispensary opening for recreational sales
WHEN: Join us all week, beginning on Dec 7, 2015 at 11:00am.
WHERE: Simply Pure Dispensary. 2000 W. 32nd Ave., Denver CO. 80211
Hours: Monday – Saturday 9:00am – 6:50pm / Sunday 10:00am – 6:50pm