With Mason having undergone many changes over the years, Chairman of the Mason 150 Coordinating Committee and Mayor Pro Tem Marlon Brown finds it hard to speculate on the future – especially when it comes to the topic of marijuana. “I honestly do not know whether or not marijuana use will be completely legalized in the foreseeable future,” Brown said. “So much is still unknown at this point.”
When Michigan lawmakers passed the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act in 2008, making marijuana use legal for patients who had a prescription from a qualified doctor, it posed a conundrum to city governments around the state. With any use of marijuana still illegal at the federal level, cities had to tread carefully. “Even though the state was allowing it we did not want to violate federal law because the federal government could have come and fought the city,” Brown said.
A public workshop to answer questions of Mason residents over the city’s time capsule project was held Nov. 2 at the Mason Area Historical Museum. The meeting was led by Alissa Day, vice president of the Mason Area Historical Society, who covered general instructions and submission ideas for the time capsule. The project, which is a part of Mason’s sesquicentennial celebration put on by the Mason 150 Committee, is accepting submissions until Dec. 1.
Small, locally owned breweries, known as microbreweries, have become exceedingly popular across the nation, and Mason’s Bad Brewing is an example of that. When Bad Brewing Co-Owner Brian Rasdale, who had brewed his own beer at home for years, was laid off as a Lansing police officer in 2010, he decided the time was right to pursue his passion. “This was always kind of a pipe dream,” Rasdale said, “and we finally got an opportunity and said screw it let’s do it.”
Four years after Rasdale and co-owner Danielle French opened the brewpub in July 2011, Bad Brewing has seen success in Mason. “It has come so far in three years, and there’s so many people opening,” French said. “We just happened to hit the market at the right time.”
According to a study by the nation-wide Brewers Association, there were 159 breweries in Michigan, a 66 percent increase from 2011, with Michigan breweries providing 7,137 jobs, resulting in a total economic impact of more than $600 million.