DENVER - While traditional tourism bureaus warn about the drawbacks of pot tourism, some entrepreneurs are making plans for Colorado to become a marijuana Mecca.
"We open at 9 a.m., and the phone was ringing all morning with people from all over the country," said Steve Horwitz, owner of Ganja Gourmet, a medical marijuana dispensary specializing in edible marijuana. "Every two minutes, the phone was ringing and it's another person that wants to come on vacation."
On Twitter, a quick search showed many people tweeting about Colorado vacations and getting a "Rocky Mountain High."
Breckenridge has already been dubbed "The Amsterdam of The Rockies," after it legalized possession in 2010.
"I think it's possible some tourists may have increased interest in coming to Colorado because we are a common sense state that doesn't waste our precious resources arresting adults for possessing small amounts of marijuana," said Brian Vicente, a marijuana advocate with Sensible Colorado.
But some tourism officials have stated concerns that being perceived as a marijuana Mecca could tarnish Colorado's tourism image.
That hasn't stopped some entrepreneurs from dreaming big. Timothy Tipton said he is planning to launch a bus tour featuring marijuana points of interest in Denver.
His business plan states: "This fun-filled excursion will leave a lasting positive memory and enhanced understanding of the benefits of the plant in its many forms."
Horwitz said when the government works out the details, he plans to launch new marijuana-laced drinks that could attract tourists to his shop.
But for now, tourists can't buy pot at his dispensary unless they have a medical marijuana license.
For the time being, anyone looking to smoke pot will still have to buy it on the black market, said Horwitz.
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