The Cannabis Cafe in Portland, OR, is the first to give people who have been prescribed marijuana by a physician, a place to get and smoke it, although they have to remain out of public view. Patients who have been prescribed marijuana usually have to buy it from a licensed dispensary and then take it elsewhere. The owner of the cafe, Eric Solomon, said he is looking forward to holding marijuana-themed weddings, film festivals, and dances. "I still run a coffee shop and events venue, just like I did before we converted it to the Cannabis Cafe, but now it will be cannabis-themed," he said. Madeline Martinez, the executive director of Oregon NORML said: "This club represents personal freedom, finally. Our plans go beyond serving food and marijuana. We hope to have classes, seminars, even a cannabis community college, based here to help people learn about growing and other uses for cannabis." The cafe is in a two-story building which formerly housed a speak-easy and adult erotic club called Rumpspankers. It is technically a private club, but is open to any Oregon residents who hold an official medical marijuana card. There are about 21,000 patients registered to use marijuana in the state. Doctors have prescribed marijuana for a host of illnesses, including Alzheimer's, diabetes, multiple sclerosis and Tourette's syndrome. The creation of the cafe comes almost a month after the Obama administration told federal lawyers not to prosecute patients who use marijuana for medical reasons, or dispensaries in states which have legalized them. About a dozen states, including Oregon, followed California's 1996 move to adopt medical marijuana laws, and allowing the drug to be cultivated and sold for medical use. Growing, possessing, distributing, and smoking marijuana are still illegal under US federal law, which makes no distinction between medical and recreational use.