Aspen Jewish Community Center launches pot-infused art events |

Aspen Jewish Community Center launches pot-infused art events

Andrew Travers
The Aspen Times

The Chabad Jewish Community Center on Main Street has invited the public to puff and paint in a series of classes this summer.

The cannabis-enhanced art classes — dubbed “Art with Mary Jane” — will welcome and encourage smoking and eating marijuana during lessons taught by local artists at the center. Scheduled for Aug. 18 and Sept. 8, the events are BYOC (bring your own cannabis).

Suzanne Horwich, director of arts programs at the center, said she suggested the classes to Rabbi Mendel Mintz and the center’s board as a cultural community outreach tool and as a different take on the wine-and-art classes that have grown in popularity here and around the U.S.

“I pitched this idea not knowing if it would fly or if I would instantly lose my job,” Horwich said Wednesday. “They were supportive of doing something groundbreaking.”

The classes — restricted to people age 21 and older — will be held under a tent on the center’s balcony. The center cleared the idea with its lawyer and local law enforcement, according to Horwich.

“I want people to experience the joy of creating art with the guidance and instruction of a professional artist, and if they choose to indulge in a now-legal substance, why not?” she said in the event announcement. “Sometimes with the aid of marijuana it’s easier to follow your bliss while creating. Of course, it’s not required, and we welcome people just to come for a class.”

The center also is offering its pot-infused art class for private parties and corporate events.

The new 19,000-square-foot center opened last summer. Since winter, its ground-floor art gallery has aimed to become a community gathering place and a player in the local arts scene with rotating art exhibitions. This summer those offerings are expanding to include book-signings, speakers and the creative cannabis classes.

Cost of the two-hour classes is $125, which includes art supplies, wine, beer, soft drinks and non-marijuana munchies prepared by center chef Stanley Coriat. Register at

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