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4/20 celebration promotes medical marijuana

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PHOENIX (KSAZ) - Easter Sunday is also the annual "four twenty" celebration, for some people, a lighthearted celebration of marijuana.

But there is also a serious side a medical side.
 
On Saturday, there was a celebration of marijuana for medical use and a fundraiser to take on a chronic disease.
 
Folks in a happy frame of mind outside The Holistic Center a medical marijuana dispensary in Phoenix.
 
"So it is 420 weekend, it has been around a long time, nobody is exactly sure where it came from, but we have heard stories that there were a bunch of hippies who would meet at 4:20 every day and smoke some cannabis," said Cindy Abbott.
 
But there was a serious side to this celebration, an emphasis on marijuana as medicine.
 
"Well, I happen to have MS diagnosed in December 2013, I was not a recreational cannabis user, but found I have become a patient, it is very helpful for spasms, sleeping , and things like that," said Abbott.
 
The holistic center and vendors are donating profits today to the fight against multiple sclerosis.
 
"it is just an event to bring our patients together show appreciation and have some fun with it," she said.
 
Medical marijuana dispensary operators are keenly aware controversy swirls around their business. They say they welcome scrutiny and regulation.
 
"it is all very regulated we are thankful for that want to be 100 percent compliant," said Abbott.

Dispensary operators say they know there is continuing opposition to their industry, and they must remain politically engaged to allow their fledgling industry to thrive.
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