“The staff has a nice family vibe and works together to make everyone’s experience the best we can.” Dan Lankford – Alaska Leaf Budtender of the Month
Dan Lankford is a familiar face to many customers in downtown Anchorage at Denali Dispensaries. The other half to the fabulous Chef Bombshell, the two make a power couple within the Alaskan Cannabis market that is hard to top. Having been involved at the store for over a year, Dan knows his products well – and their own flower even better.
When did Cannabis first come into your life?
Cannabis first came into my life when I was 19-years-old, recreationally – early 30s medically. I always enjoyed smoking Cannabis just for the pure enjoyment, then later found out how much better it made me feel instead of prescription pills for my chronic back pain.
How did you become a budtender?
I became a budtender thanks to my friend who was about to go into business with the owner of Denali Dispensaries. I was originally going to work in the cultivation, but instead I gave budtending and retail a shot and fell in love. I like interaction with people, so it was the perfect fit.
What is your favorite part of being a budtender?
My favorite part of the job is the people. I like hearing their stories and experiences – not just with marijuana, but life in general. It is satisfying to know that sometimes those stories or their venting can help brighten their day, even before they get home and consume.
Favorite way to consume?
When it comes to consuming I am a total joint, preroll, blunt type of guy. The convenience of hands free is a bonus when I smoke. I don’t have the lungs for bong hits or dab rigs, and pipes I’ll smoke out of if I run out of papers.
What are your favorite strains and producers?
I have a few favorites when it comes to cultivators and strains.
Guest Services – Lemon Ice Pucker, Tanana Herb Company – Mandarin Cookies, Frontier Farmers – Lemon Harambee and Hammerhead. I am also a huge fan of our cultivation’s products as well. Denali Dispensaries – Odins’s Beard, Tangerine Dream, Lime Time and many more new ones to come.
How do you find the right Cannabis for a customer?
By interacting with them, asking what they have planned for the day, what preferences they have, how they like to smoke. Great interaction usually gets good feedback on what the individual needs or is looking for. Our slogan says it all: Find your high.
What do you like most about BEING AT Denali?
I like working for Denali Dispensaries because of the people I work for and with. Branden (owner) has a great young mind full of knowledge and means for success. The staff has a nice family vibe and works together to make everyone’s experience the best we can.
HOBBIES OFF THE CLOCK?
My hobbies when I’m not budtending are simple – I spend time at home with my amazing soon to be wife Chef Bombshell Michelle and her daughter. I also hang with friends and make frequent trips to Alyeska. Other than that I am a quiet homebody who loves trying new strains and living life with the ones I love.
225 E 5th Ave, Anchorage
INTERVIEW by JOSHUA STAHLE/ALASKA LEAF | PHOTO by BOOM MEDIA