The New England Cannabis Convention in March is expected to draw marijuana entrepreneurs and activists to Boston’s Hynes Convention Center as the state takes steps towards opening retail pot shops.

Headliners at the trade show include Jim McMahon, the former Chicago Bears quarterback, and former WBZ sportcaster Bob Lobel.

The convention is scheduled for Saturday, March 24, and Sunday, March 25.

Organizers say more than 6,000 people are expected to attend the convention, which will also feature 200 vendors panels on the new “cash crop” for Massachusetts farmers, “alternative healing for U.S. military veterans” and developments in the burgeoning Massachusetts marijuana industry.

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McMahon is slated to appear with Lobel at a live panel discussion, dubbed “The Doc and the Jocks” and focused on marijuana as a treatment for sports injuries. Dr. Uma Dhanabalan is the moderator.

“Massachusetts has made a commitment to establishing a vibrant cannabis industry, and part of our job at NECANN is to help entrepreneurs work together as a community and keep a majority of the capital circulating locally,” Marc Shepard, co-founder of the convention, said in a statement.

“If we are working together, serving each other, hiring locally and building a business infrastructure for cannabis, then it really can be a $2 billion industry right here in New England,” he added.

Other 2018 conventions are planned for Northampton; Providence; Portland, Maine; Burlington, Vermont and Reno, Nevada.

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