adult use dispensaries
- Open for business (recreational sales) on January 1st. Current menus reflect medicinal prices only.
- This is a historic and fluid situation in Colorado. We will update our list and our map before and after January 1st to reflect what other shops will be open for recreational sales.
What you need to know about adult use in Colorado
Q: What does “recreational marijuana” mean in Colorado?
On January 1st, 2014, Colorado legalized weed, meaning Colorado has become the first state in the United States to sell recreational cannabis to anyone ages 21 and over at licensed facilities. Thanks to Amendment 64, possession of up to an ounce of cannabis will be legal in Colorado if you’re 21 or older. Nonetheless, there are a myriad of uncertainties, questions, and misconceptions that both Colorado’s citizens and tourists throughout the world will face—and we’re here to answer all of them!
Q: Why is the sale of recreational marijuana to adults legal in Colorado?
On November 6th, 2012, Colorado’s Amendment 64 passed, gaining a 55.32% majority of the 2,356,113 votes cast. This landmark vote made Colorado—along with Washington—the first state in the United States of America to legalize cannabis for personal use and legal sale in a state-monitored regulated industry. On December 10th, 2012, Governor Hickenlooper signed Amendment 64, creating a task force and planting the seed for what has become America’s first legal marijuana state.
Q: How do I tell if a shop is open for recreational sales?
If you see the new A-Okay symbol on our map, it correlates with shops open for recreational sales in Colorado.
Q: Who can buy weed in Colorado?
Any individual over the age of 21 from any state or country with a valid ID can purchase cannabis from one of Colorado’s licensed recreational marijuana shops. You do not need any sort of medical marijuana card or doctor’s note to enter these shops.
Q: How much weed can people buy?
In-state, Colorado residents can purchase (and possess) up to an ounce of cannabis at a time. Out of state or country visitors may only purchase a quarter ounce of marijuana at a time.
Q: How many places can you buy recreational weed from on January 1st, 2014?
Currently, Colorado anticipates the recreational dispensaries on the above list (and ones with the A-Okay symbol on the map) to open for business on January 1st, 2014. Thus far, the state of Colorado has handed out 136 licenses for recreational shops, a majority of which are in Denver. All of these 136 recreational shops should open some time in 2014 and our map will always keep you up to date on where to find the good stuff.
Q: So are medical marijuana centers and dispensaries in the same place?
Yes and no. If a recreational dispensary is for 21+, then it is permitted to co-exist with its existing medical center. The clubs will all use different inventory for recreational packaging than medical, and as noted, your recreational rights differ from medical patient rights. Our map and dispensary pages will relay the correct information to you.
Q: What Colorado cities and townships will have recreational facilities in 2014?
- Black Hawk
- Crested Butte
- Garden City
- Glenwood Springs
- Idaho Springs
- Larimer County
- Manitou Springs
- Oak Creek
- Red Cliff
- Steamboat Springs
- Wheat Ridge
Q: What cities have moratoriums on recreational facilities (meaning they may have facilities open sometime in 2014)?
- Federal Heights
- Log Lane Village
Q: What cities have banned recreational facilities?
- Buena Vista
- Castle Rock
- Cherry Hills Village
- Colorado Springs
- Del Norte
- Estes Park
- Fort Collins
- Fort Morgan
- Green Mountain Falls
- Greenwood Village
- La Junta
- Lone Tree
- Palmer Lake
- Poncha Springs
- Silver Cliff
- Woodland Park
Q: Can you smoke in privately owned venues like concert halls and restaurants?
If the venue says it allows cannabis consumption on site, then yes. Colorado's Clean Indoor Act prohibits on-site consumption, but many local venues sidestep and ignore this law that carries a $200-$500 dollar fine. If an event is promoted as a cannabis friendly event, you may not be able to smoke there. Just know that your actions, while sanctioned by that facility, are not sanctioned by the state of Colorado.
Q: Can you take your weed home with you to a state where cannabis is not legal?
NO! This violates federal law. While Federal Authorities have stated they will allow Colorado to function without their interference, federal laws still apply, and you should always abide by them.
Q: Can you get a DUI for smoking weed?
5 nanograms of THC per milliliter of blood, just a few hits off a joint, can result in a DUI in Colorado. If you refuse a blood test, you will lose your license for a year.
Q: Can recreational shoppers buy the same stuff medicinal shoppers can?
Not just yet. You can buy raw cannabis and cannabis seeds from all of the recreational shops. Cannabis extracts, tinctures, and edibles are a work in progress, and will not be available at most recreational centers on January 1st, 2014. Once MIPs (Medical Marijuana Infused Products) are approved by the state for recreational licenses to produce, they can transfer medical marijuana inventory to recreational marijuana inventory as a one time transfer. As of December 27th, 2013, three infused product manufacturers have retail marijuana licenses and can sell retail marijuana products.
Q: Who can open a recreational marijuana center?
The state of Colorado has a moratorium period on new, non-transferred recreational marijuana dispensaries until October 1st, 2014. Until then, only current medical marijuana centers can transfer to recreational. However, Denver has a two-year moratorium on new businesses opening, so until 2016, there will be no new dispensaries in Denver. Many other cities also have moratoriums or bans on recreational facilities (listed above). New recreational facilities will be able to apply for licenses, but need to be approved by their local government along with the state of Colorado after October 1st, 2014.
Q: If I live in or want to move to Colorado, what are my rights there?
- You can possess up to an ounce of cannabis (without needing a medical card).
- In the city of Denver, you can grow up to 6 plants of cannabis per person and 12 per house. This residential limit varies in other municipalities, so know your town or city's local laws.
- BUT: you cannot sell weed to anyone; you are allowed to donate it to adults over 21 (free of charge).
Q: How do I get a job in Colorado's cannabis industry?
To work in licensed marijuana facilities (like dispensaries and grows), you will need an official badge issued from the state’s MMED (Medical Marijuana Enforcement Division). The process can take up to 10 visits, and is a tedious one. However, without a badge, you will not be hired by anyone following state law.
See Marijuana.com for more information.
Q: How much will recreational weed cost in Colorado?
In medical marijuana dispensaries, grams cost an average of approximately $8-10 and $40-45 per 1/8. Thanks to various excise taxes, that number is expected to climb to approximately $15 a gram and $60 an 1/8 on the recreational side. The average cost of a pound of cannabis is also expected to rise from around $2,000 to as much as $4,000.
See Marijuana.com for more information.
Q: Can you smoke weed in public?
No, you will receive a ticket and a fine if caught smoking cannabis at a highly populated area like 16th Street Mall, Civic Center Park or on state (or federal) owned property. You cannot consume cannabis within 1,000 feet of a school. Your best bet is to find a cannabis-friendly hotel, venue, or go to a friend’s place where consumption is legal—even on a friend's front porch. Remember to always use discretion, positively represent the cannabis community, and help us keep progressing. The entire world is watching Colorado!
Q: What's the MED?
"MED" stands for the state of Colorado’s Marijuana Enforcement Division. Formerly the MMED (Medical Marijuana Enforcement Division) this state-run task force now regulates and oversees the entire state of Colorado's recreational cannabis industry from seed to sale.
Q: What is the MITS?
"MITS" stands for Marijuana Inventory Tracking Solution, the software utilized by the state of Colorado to track cannabis sales with RFID (radio-frequency identification) tags.
Q: What’s a MMC License?
“MMC” stands for Medical Marijuana Center License. Recreational facilities receive a different license and designation than MMC.
Q: What's a MIPs License ?
“MIP” stands for Medical Marijuana Infused Products Manufacturing License. Edible and infused product companies are required to have a MIP for recreational as well as medical marijuana.
Q: What's an OPC License?
“OPC” stands for Medical Marijuana Optional Premises Cultivation License. Both medical and recreational grow facilities need an OPC to legally produce recreational cannabis in the state of Colorado.