Detroit Red Wings' Darren McCarty comes to Big Rapids
The staunch cannabis advocate supported Meds Cafe's opening.
Locals got the chance to meet and greet with former Detroit Red Wings right winger Darren McCarty at the grand opening of Meds Cafe, a new dispensary at 225 S. Michigan Ave.
McCarty was present from 1-4 p.m. Friday, Sept. 1, talking with fans, signing sticks, pictures and jerseys and sharing his strong advocacy for cannabis.
His love for cannabis started in 1999 when he decided to smoke marijuana instead of taking the doctor-prescribed pain pills he was given for a sports hernia.
"When I retired, I took that Red Wing off and put the cannabis plant on the chest of my jersey,” McCarty said. “Everything that I've accomplished on the ice, this isn't about that. It's about the connection with the community.”
Since retirement, McCarty has created his own marijuana brand and opened up about his love for the plant. He now advocates for legalization.
“This plant saved my life, so now I dedicated my life to this plant,” he said.
McCarty is passionate about protecting cannabis and spreading the good word about it.
“I will protect it even more than what I did my teammates, and we know what I'll do on that aspect,” McCarty said.
McCarty said the meet-and-greet and opening of Meds Cafe went well, and he was happy to work with Jamie Lowell, the head of operations, who also helped write legislation for cannabis in Michigan.
“Darren immersed himself in our community. He has a pretty intensely deep testimonial about using cannabis for his health and wellness. He befriended many of us,” Lowell said.
McCarty said the people at Meds Cafe are good to work with and forward-thinking about cannabis.
“It's finding the places that see that we’re in 2023 with education and everything moving forward,” McCarty said.
He was happy to see the community come out to support the opening.
“It's about the people that come out in the community that see what they're doing and want to be a part of it,” he said.
McCarty said it was a great day of making connections.
“This is part of the vision of connecting the state, making not only cannabis but communities. It's all about both,” he said.
McCarty was grateful for the opportunity to advocate for cannabis and meet members of the community.
“It's such an honor. It's great to be here with my friends, Meds Cafe, and to be doing bigger and brighter things,” he said.