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POT TOPICS: Nephew names strain after Markle, ‘Ashley’s Law’ passes IL Senate

Seth Perlman/AP file photo

Meghan Markle’s nephew unveils weed strain named after the royal bride

This week, Meghan Markle’s nephew unveiled a new cannabis strain named for the American actress in the lead-up to Saturday’s royal wedding.

Tyler Dooley, 25, is growing his new strain — “Markle Sparkle” — in honor of his aunt’s upcoming nuptials to Prince Harry, Leafbuyer reported.

The sativa-dominant hybrid is said to relieve pain, anxiety and insomnia, according to Dooley, a licensed medical cannabis grower in Oregon. It will be available is dispensaries in Oregon on June 2.

State Senate passes bill to give kids access to cannabis at schools

In a 50-2 vote, the Illinois Senate approved a bill Thursday that would allow parents or guardians to medicate children with medical cannabis at schools across the state.

State Rep. Lou Lang, D-Skokie, brought the bill to the floor of the Illinois House after the parents of 12-year-old Ashley Surin filed a federal lawsuit in January against the state and Schaumburg School District 54 for failing to include public schools among the places people can possess medical cannabis. After years of trying out traditional medications, Ashley’s doctors recommended medical cannabis to treat seizures related to a leukemia diagnosis.

Surin family photo via USA Today

A judge ultimately ruled in favor of the family later that month, allowing Ashley to bring her medication to school. Lang’s measure, dubbed “Ashley’s Law,” passed the Illinois House last month in a 99-1 vote.

On Thursday, Ashley and her parents, Jim and Maureen Surin, sat in the gallery as the state Senate passed the bill.

“I think the world is finally accepting that it’s time for a change, and I think there’s more Ashleys out there that need this,” Ashley’s mother, Maureen Surin, said after the vote.

The measure was sent to Gov. Bruce Rauner’s desk for final approval.

House committee votes to shield medical pot from federal prosecution

The House Appropriations Committee voted Thursday to continue shielding medical cannabis patients and providers from federal prosecution.

The continuance of the provision, which was first attached to legislation funding the U.S. Department of Justice in 2014, has been in question due to recent efforts by GOP leaders to prevent votes on pot-related amendments, according to Forbes.

The move to add the provision as a rider to legislation funding U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ department for Fiscal Year 2019 received bipartisan support in committee.

Estonian municipality put pot leaf on flag

A municipality in southern Estonia has chosen to put a cannabis leaf on its flag.

Kanepi, which means cannabis in Estonian, chose a new flag after three municipalities merged into one following last year’s administrative reform, according to the Associated Press.

Andrus Seeme, mayor of Kanepi, noted that 80 percent of respondents voted for the design — a silver cannabis leaf on a green shield — during a 2017 referendum.

Kanepi Municipality

Niles East High School smokers reunite online

The “Mulford Street Smokers,” a group of former students who attended the now-defunct Niles East High School in Skokie in the 1970s, have created a Facebook page to commemorate their glory daze, according to the Sun-Times’ Mitch Dudek.

A picture of Cheech and Chong smoking a massive joint greets visitors when they visit the page, which has just over 420 members. During that time, the school’s open campus allowed students to walk off campus to smoke cigarettes and reefer.

Teens gathering across the street from Niles East High School

Teens from Niles East High School regularly gathered across the street from the school to smoke; now they gather on Facebook to shoot the breeze. | Facebook photo

“It was stupid, but it was sure fun,” 57-year-old Sam Nudelman said. “It was mostly the ‘freaks’ or ‘burnouts’ who hung out there, but it was kind of a crossover, too — where the jocks came there to buy their weed from the freaks.”

Chicago chef cooks up pricy, cannabis-infused meals for the stars

Chicago native Zairilla Bacon has become the go-to chef for stony celebrities like Snoop Dogg and Tommy Chong. Her secret ingredient? Lots of high-priced pot, naturally.

Prior to making a mark with her cannabis-infused concoctions, Bacon graduated from Waukegan High School and studied at the College of Lake County before starting her own catering business. Bacon, who has remained an avid cannabis user since her teens, started cooking for her large family at a young age.

In 2012, Bacon moved to Las Vegas and took a job as a delivery driver for a dispensary. As part of the job, she handed out a free cannabis-infused edible with every order she dropped off. That’s when she saw an opportunity to combine her love of cooking with her proclivity for pot.

“I told my boss, ‘I know how to cook, I would love to get into that,’” Bacon said.

Joe William, her former boss and the owner of a chain of dispensaries known as the California Care Group, then taught her how to make cannabis-infused butter, and the rest is history.

“Once I got on board, their sales for edibles went up tremendously,” she added.

After finding that initial success, Bacon started her latest venture, Z’s Menu, which caters homemade munchies and her signature “Z Juice” to state-registered medical marijuana patients. She has since cooked up pot-laced meals for a growing list of celebrity clients, including former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson and rappers Method Man, Redman and Paul Wall.

During an appearance last year on Viceland, Bacon cooks for Tommy Chong ))

Last year, Bacon appeared on an episode of 2 Chainz’s Viceland show, “Most Expensivest,” where she cooked a pricy medicated meal for the Atlanta rapper and his guests, Chong and stand-up comedian Hannibal Buress (who is also a Chicago native). On the menu were lobster tails ($525 per pound), crab legs ($225 per pound) and chicken wings (roughly $20 per wing). Bacon noted that the high costs were dictated by the price of the “top shelf” cannabis she used, which can run up to $75 per gram.

Upcoming cannabis events in Chicago area:

• Find out if you’re eligible to apply for the state’s medical cannabis program and how to speak with physicians about choosing cannabis as treatment during a Q & A session at 1 p.m. on Sunday at Top Fuel Saloon, 275 S. Hickory St., in Braidwood. For more information, click here.

• Free fingerprinting and medical cannabis application services are being offered at 7 p.m. on May 22 at the Ottawa Boat Club, 500 Columbus St., in Ottawa. For more information, click here.

• Free fingerprinting and medical cannabis application services are being offered at 7 p.m. on May 24 at the Schaumburg Township District Library, 130 S. Roselle Rd., in Schaumburg. For more information, click here