PHOENIX — Crowds at dispensaries in downtown Phoenix gathered as they opened their doors for the first time to sell recreational marijuana.
"I'm out here trying to buy some weed, honestly. It’s just my choice of vice, you know, it’s nice. It’s mellow," Dylan Shatwell said.
Katheryne Lent, an admitted long-time marijuana smoker, shared praise for the industry for coming this far in Arizona.
"Yeah, I'm really excited about it, I'm an advocate and it's really a lifestyle choice," she said.
As of Friday, patrons over the age of 21 could purchase recreational marijuana products at state licensed dispensaries.
President of Curaleaf Dispensary, Steve Cottrell said that after more than 10 years in this business, they're happy to legally serve fresh faces, new to cannabis.
"It's a big day for Arizona, we’ve been waiting a long time for this, we've made getting through the line as fast as humanly possible and have plenty of employees to answer questions for new customers and existing patients," he said.
As lines formed around buildings, live music and flashing lights also drew crowds.
"I actually don't drink because you get hungover, so it’s nice you can smoke and feel good the next day,” Griffin Cottrell explained.
Plus, 16% excise tax gets tacked onto every recreational product sold. That money will go into the state's coffers.
"I think that’s exactly what we should be doing, taking things like this and putting it toward positive things," Lent said.
Dispensaries doubled up on staff and inventory, anticipating a revolving door of regulars and people new to cannabis.