What you need to know about Marion's upcoming medical marijuana dispensary, its owner

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When will medical marijuana in Ohio be available? Will I need a prescription? Can I use it for recreation? Marilyn Icsman/The Enquirer

John Hondros(Photo: Photo provided)

CHILLICOTHE – By year’s end, John Hondros hopes to have at least three medical marijuana dispensaries open, but just a handful of years ago, he wasn’t even in favor of making medical marijuana legal.

Hondros, the 74-year-old head of the Hondros Family of Companies which includes Hondros College, began to change his mind as the conversation surrounding legalizing marijuana ramped up across the state over the past four years.

“I’m a real believer in medical marijuana, but I’m not an advocate of recreational,” he said.

Hondros’ entrepreneurial spirit led him to be part of Ohio’s new venture by bringing together a team to create Verdant Creations. In June, Verdant was awarded provisional licenses to open medical marijuana dispensaries in Chillicothe, Newark, Marion, and Columbus. Each dispensary is expected to have 10 to 15 associates, and Hondros aims to have the three rural sites open sometime in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Who is John Hondros?

An artistic rendering shows the preliminary layout and look being planned for Verdant Creations’ medical marijuana dispensaries. (Photo: Provided by Verdant Creations)

Hondros had been working as an attorney with small business start-ups when 46 years ago he decided to start his own home remodeling business in Columbus. About a decade later, he began the Ohio Real Estate Preparatory School which grew into the Hondros College of Business.

His foray into medical marijuana began a few years ago as he and friends began to learn more about how marijuana could be used medically to help with chronic pain.

His wife,

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