This Alberta City Caused Quite A Stir With Its Cute Marijuana Mascot

Leduc - a small city in Alberta that's just south of Edmonton - caused controversy this week by rolling out a cute marijuana mascot for its cannabis education program.

The cartoonish mascot called Buddy only lasted a few days in his new position before getting shelved due to negative feedback from members of the community who felt the anthropomorphic cannabis plant was making marijuana more appealing to children.

"When we designed him, at no point were we thinking that people would think that we were trying to market cannabis to children," said Leduc spokeswoman Nikki Booth. "We thought that putting a face like Buddy would just help connect him with residents."

And while some reviews of the marijuana mascot were positive, "the negative ones were really focused around parents being concerned that their kids had driven past our road signs and seen Buddy and thought he was really cute."

Buddy may be gone, but he's definitely not forgotten. Although he was only the city's marijuana mascot for 5 days, he made quite an impression in that short time.

"He did create a lot of conversation in the community and the region. We've had about 4,000 hits to our website in a very, very short period of time," Booth said. "In all of the prior education about our new bylaws, the highest number we hit about people going to our website was 58."

So while the new education program will go over better with parents, it might not be as effective if only a few dozen people take the time to look at it. 

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