New “Cannected Dispensary” opens in iconic Box Car BBQ location

Sitting out almost by itself along Route 66 on West Dewey Avenue, the iconic yellow Box Car BBQ building is definitely hard to miss. Many will remember the mouth-watering BBQ that George Groenwold served for years when the building was a restaurant. George’s son has since purchased the building and although the place hasn’t served BBQ in years, Lance Groenwold has kept sentimental touches of his late father’s career that remain apparent, though the businesses he’s running in there now have little to do with ribs or brisket.

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Initially, Groenwold began running his digital marketing business in the building, and while that won’t change, the east side of the building has gotten a whole new look and is hoping to attract a new breed of customers under the new name “Cannected Dispensary.”

A play on the word “connected,” the new dispensary is meant to be reminiscent of Sapulpa’s former tagline, “the most connected city in the state,” and also Groenwold’s effort to keep the sense of community that his father’s restaurant had while opening the business to new resources for those dealing with medical ailments that might be solved by CBD or Cannabis. The goal? Keep it personal.

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Groenwold says that the entire approach has been through the lens of keeping it personal and comfortable, including the way they’ve laid out the store in a way that encourages the employees to show guests around to find the specific treatment for their problem, not encourage “forced interactions” that result in trying to sell the highest-priced items.

“All of our vendors, we chose based on their story,” Groenwold says. “We wanted to make sure their values are in line with our values.” The inventory on display includes pens, creams, patches, bath bombs, and the more common items you’d find in a dispensary, like edibles and raw flower.

Lance Groenwold, left, and Angel Hurley, right, are opening Cannected Dispensary in the old Box Car BBQ location this week.

Groenwold has brought in a seasoned dispensary and medical field professional, Angel Hurley, to help guide new patients to the precise treatment they need. Hurley says she encourages patients to keep a log of what they’re doing and how they’re feeling as the being treatment, allowing them to adjust as needed. “It’s all about that personal connection,” she echoes.

The dispensary retail area has had a beautiful makeover, trading in concrete for wooden accent walls, but still retains some of the old charms, including George’s old grill, which sits in a corner. Local artist Price Jones hand-painted the artwork on the outside of the building, and if you look carefully, you can spot a bowler hat cufflink on the hand directing customers to the drive-thru. “There are a lot of little details that show that dad is still a part of this place,” Groenwold says.

George’s old grill still sits in the corner. It’s not in use, but one of several ways Lance pays tribute to his late father.

The business will be launching what they call a “Summer Bash” at noon on Saturday, July 17th which will include pop-up vendors, food trucks, and they hope to be a great experience to start what they call “a healthy dialogue” about how their dispensary could be the right “cannection” you need.