Retail cannabis store is 'steady, busy' on Winsted Road with 200 transactions daily

TORRINGTON —  Still River Wellness owner Tom Macre has seen a steady stream of customers from in and around Torrington at the city's first retail cannabis store since it opened at the beginning of the month

"It's been pretty steady," said Macre, whose medical cannabis business opened in 2019 on Winsted Road and this year added a retail component. "We're probably doing about 200 transactions a day.

"There's plenty of parking, and people can come and go easily," Macre said. "It's busier on nights and weekends when people are on their way home from work. We've gotten a lot of good feedback from people."

The new store, adjacent to the medical marijuana business, offers shoppers a clean, bright room with glass-topped displays at the counter, rolling papers, pipes and other paraphernalia, and a wide selection of edibles, pre-rolls and flower, or marijuana buds. Customers can order online in advance or walk in to shop, with staff assistance. 

The staff on a recent day included Macre, John Becker, Natalie Arel and Macre's brother, Colin.

Becker, who has PTSD, is a medical marijuana patient at Still River. "It's been fantastic for me, and it helps so much with my PTSD," he said. "I make it my business to try new inventory, and I can give customers an idea of what to expect from different types. I can lend that experience to them.

"I've heard from our customers that a lot of times, the staff at a cannabis store doesn't know anything about what they're selling, and that's not really helpful," Becker said. "Here, we understand the benefits; retail stores can't give medical advice, but we can do that here."

Macre echoed the sentiment.

"Budtenders are getting good training so they can serve people better," Macre said. "The state has requirements (for retail staff) to follow, but we supplement those requirements with our own training."

In the medical wellness division at Still River, new patients meet with a cannabis pharmacist to be educated about the product they'll use, including on dosage and anticipated benefits.

In addition, the staff is educated to understand the often-debilitating health conditions that qualify a person to use marijuana in Connecticut. Those conditions include, among others, Parkinson's disease, Multiple Sclerosis and chronic pain. Users must have a state-licensed physician or advanced practice registered nurse provide a recommendation to be registered into the state program. 

For the casual user of marijuana, none of that applies; but buyers are limited to purchasing a certain amount each month. A staff member checks IDs at the retail store's entrance before opening the door. Inside, customers are directed to either the retail entrance —  where their ID is rechecked —  or to the medical counter to register. 

According to, adults age 21 and over can legally purchase up to a fourth of an ounce, or seven total grams, of marijuana per transaction for recreational consumption; the state established that rule in January 2023.  

Once inside the retail store, customers are served by one of four or five people behind the counter. There, they can talk with a staff member about what they want.  A digital bulletin board lists all products that are available that day. 

Brochures offer information on products such as Encore Gummies, sugary or sour squares, and a new item, chocolates from CTPharma, in milk or dark flavors. Small jars of cannabis in varying strengths from Rythm and Weedmaps, two of the dispensary's producers in Connecticut, are paired in a display with carrying cases and containers. 

"We only have four producers right now in Connecticut, so basically we're carrying anything and everything that's available," Macre said. "When other adult use producers get up and running, we can add more."

Store hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturdays. Sunday hours are coming soon, Macre said.

"That's the plan," he said. "We also have a new delivery service that we're implementing in the near future. All that information will be up on our website."