420 holiday means extra business for Garden City marijuana shops | MyWindsorNow.com

420 holiday means extra business for Garden City marijuana shops

Bridgett Weaver
bweaver@greeleytribune.com

G —Chrissy Deleon didn't even have time to glance down at her watch after arriving at work Wednesday morning.

As general manager at Nature's Herbs and Wellness, 522 27th St., she was busy from the second she walked in the door until almost 3 hours later.

"We saw a little over 200 people by 9:15 this morning," Deleon said. That was the first time she had a chance to check her watch since she got to work at 6:30 a.m. The shop didn't open until 8 a.m., but Deleon got there early to get ready.

Deleon said people were lining up just after midnight Tuesday night to catch some of the deals the shop had for the pot holiday Wednesday.

Between the recreational and medical sides of the marijuana business, there must have been close to 100 people waiting for Nature's to open Wednesday, said owner John Rotherham.

And Wednesday's rainy weather brought with it a whole different kind of green — weed and money.

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April 20 is normally the busiest day of the year at the pot shop and many others across the state. For Nature's, the amount of business done on 420 is rivaled only by Black Friday.

Weld County residents swooped down on Garden City's four marijuana stores to celebrate every stoner's favorite holiday: 420.

There are a lot of urban legends behind what started the 420 holiday — ranging from German troops celebrating Hitler's birthday with a joint, to an after-school meeting toke time, to a police call code for marijuana-related offenses. But one thing everyone agrees with is that marijuana fanatics get one special day a year, and it's always April 20.

Rotherham drove between his four shops in Garden City, Log Lane Village (Fort Morgan) and Denver.

"It's a busy day," Rotherham said. "It always is. It's always a good day, 420, since we've opened, for six years it's always been one of the better days. Each year it gets better and better."

They spend a lot of time gearing up for the event and run different deals at the top of every hour.

"Our orders, or anything that comes from outside, is doubled. We make sure our case is super stocked," she said. "I've been here for almost five years so it's just amazing to see the growth."

Keeping with the day's festivities, Rotherham said Nature's Herbs and Wellness has also sponsored a few events around the area, like the Luniz show at the Moxi Theater on Wednesday night.

The industry has created a large influx of tax dollars for the small town of Garden City, which houses Weld's only pot shops.

Just over half of Garden City's $1.76 million budget came from its four marijuana shops in 2015, and the sales keep growing.

The town, which has less than 300 residents, began allowing medical marijuana shops when it was legalized in 2009. The existing medical shops were able to open recreational stores in 2014, when the state gave the go ahead for rec.

With the extra money in its budget, the town has made countless improvements in the last few years, and will make more.

City officials said an 8th Avenue revitalization is in the works.

University of Northern Colorado student Sarah Manson was at the store Wednesday to grab a weed-infused snack.

"I do not smoke often, but I do participate in this holiday," she said. "It's just a fun day to relax and smoke."

Of course, the fact that it's legal in Colorado for those 21 and over is helpful. Manson is 22.

"I just think it's the one day we can all come together and celebrate and enjoy it as a community," she said. "It's fun to get out and take advantage of it being legal here."

— Tribune Reporter James Redmond contributed to this report.

Marijuana in Garden City

Garden City is home to the only recreational and medical pot shops in Weld County, which brought in $887,000 in tax money last year to the small town east of Greeley. The four businesses can be found almost at the four corners of town. They are as follows:

» Nature’s Herbs and Wellness, 522 27th St., (970) 353-1170

» Smokey’s 420 House, 2515 7th Ave., (970) 515-5839

» XG Platinum Dispensory, 2506 6th Ave., (970) 352- 4119

» LivWell Garden City, 2647 8th Ave., (970) 616-6007