On Ellsworth, the party store near University Townhouses has transitioned from liquor to ganja: After an extensive renovation, it’s now Dispo. Though nine other Michigan locations share the name, Dispo (short for “dispensary”) positions itself not as a chain but “a diverse group of like-minded individuals.” 

Owner Steve Soka says he’s lived in the area for many years and wants to be part of the neighborhood: He used local contractors for the renovation and in December ran a toy and canned-food drive. Manager Sabrina Watkins says it’s working: “We’ve had an overwhelming, positive neighborhood response.” 

Watkins says that when customers are debating their selection, she invites them to savor the rich aroma from a jar of fresh buds. “If the smell’s unpleasant,” she says, “it’s probably not for you. Your nose will tell you the good fit.” 

The impressive inventory includes concentrates displayed in a glass-doored miniature refrigerator. Though all sales are recreational, Watkins says their bud tenders can advise about medicinal uses.

Dispo, 2381 E. Ellsworth. (734) 463–4776. Daily 9 a.m.–9 p.m. disposhops.com