Oak Creek opens first recreational dispensary
Oak Creek — Naturally, Mark Stepp is putting the blame on his wife, Lindsay. If it weren’t for her, Stepp might not be living his dream as a master grower and co-owner of Oak Creek’s Park Range Recreationals.
“My wife actually pushed me a lot to do it, because she knew it was something I wanted to do,” Stepp said. “With her support and with meeting Mike and eventually meeting Mark, it really came together well.”
Stepp, along with Mike Roach and Mark Wellstone, run Oak Creek’s first recreational marijuana dispensary, located downtown at 100 W. Main Street. The shop opened its doors to the public at 4:20 p.m. Friday after a ceremonial ribbon cutting earlier that afternoon, which included Oak Creek Mayor Nikki Knoebel.
“It’s very exciting. We are being received very well by the town,” Stepp said. “It’s great to have a town that wants us, wants to work with us. You see in some of these other communities that the dispensaries aren’t so welcomed like we are. But we’ve been very welcomed by the town of Oak Creek.”
Stepp and Roach created Park Range Recreationals in 2014, initially running the operation as a grow. The idea early on was to eventually turn it into a full dispensary, and that’s when Wellstone joined the team as their chief operating officer. With Stepp and Roach working behind the scenes with the plants, Wellstone was left to take care of the front.
“This is really incredible that the day has come. It’s been a lot of hard work, for sure,” Wellstone said. “We’ve been working at it hard since about December, trying to put this thing together. It’s a highly regulated business, so we are trying to make sure to do everything right, and we are feeling real confident about it.”
Park Range Recreationals grows all its own plants in Unit B, located behind the main shop. They pride themselves on creating everything on site; however, they don’t do any in-house breeding. Stepp said they would carry many strains found throughout Routt County, plus a few more they received from friends on the Front Range.
“We have probably four or five other ones I don’t think you’ll find anywhere in Routt County. Those are some strains we got from people we know in Denver,” Stepp said. “We really believe in our product and believe we have some top-quality flower on our shelves.”
The owners hope to build a clientele from more than just Oak Creek and will offer a discount to anyone with a valid Routt County I.D. The store will be open daily from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., with a possible change in hours coming during mud season.
“It’s been a lot of fun getting this shop started,” Wellstone said. “Quite frankly, the town is really excited about it. Steamboat seems to be pretty excited about another option. So we are excited.”
For more on the shop, visit their website at parkrangerecreationals.com.
Sharing thanks, enjoying some laughs, and shedding a few tears are an indicator of the emotional levels that always seem to come with Moffat County High School graduation.