DON’T SMOKE THE MESSENGER: Pot Tourism Ideas
A consistent reason cited by local politicians attempting to go backwards on marijuana legalization is a desire to boost tourism. But they have it entirely backwards: pot is an opportunity for tourism, not an obstacle. After legalization, Colorado found that approximately 40 percent of sales were to non-residents. Unlike Colorado, Oregon is flanked by two other states with accessible pot, but there’s still plenty of opportunity, for locals and the bridge and tunnel crowd. Here’s some things The Messenger would love to see from anyone looking to cash in on the new economy.
Bus Tours: It works for wineries, so why not pot? Enthusiasts could visit farms, shops, and more without the hassle of driving.
Weed-dating: The couple that gardens together stays together. The company that sets that up, rolls in the green.
Cannabis Cafes: Like bars, but for marijuana. Laws regarding public consumption have hampered cannabis cafes in Oregon so far, but they’re a big draw in Amsterdam and Vancouver B.C., and would be here as well if advocates just make it happen.
Agri-tourism: For years, it has been a travel trend for Americans to go abroad and spend some time working on a farm. It’s also been a trend here for years at pot farms, though it’s been off the books. It’s time to flip the script and make that an above-board destination.
Conventions: Portland recently hosted Weed the People, a gigantic party and trade show for various cannabis products and accessories. Later this month, it will host the High Times Cannabis Cup. On August 22, Medford will host the Oregon Smoke Fest. More of that please. Activity-based conventions are huge draws that generate large levels of economic activity. And since for now, Oregon is one of the handful of places that can legally hold those sorts of conventions, we should run for the hills with it.
Glass Blowing Exhibitions: Oregon loves its craft fairs. And some of its finest artisans are those that blow elaborate glass pipes and sculptures. These artists should be celebrated front and center.
‘Get High on Oregon’s Mountains ‘Ad Campaign: Oregon is rich with natural beauty that is on many people’s to-visit lists already. But now there is an added incentive. We market our beer and wine scenes, and pot could be just as big a draw, especially because of its common side-effect of increasing appreciation for natural beauty.
Bud and Breakfast: Cannabis-friendly hotels and inns. ‘Nuff said.
Pot Classes: It’s long been a thing to take an art class with a glass of wine. Why not a joint? Why not a cooking class that teaches you how to make the best pot brownies around, as well as a cannabis souffle? Sign us up please.
Planetariums: You know what’s pretty amazing? The universe. You know what makes you appreciate how amazing it is more? Pot. The science geek is already rising in popular culture and legal pot could help cool the majesty of creation even more.