About 30 million people visit Niagara Falls every year. They come for the falls, they come for the casinos, they come on their honeymoons. Even Superman and Lois Lane went there. But, hey, why not give tourists one more reason to come.
At least that’s what some officials on the Canadian side of the attraction are thinking. Because soon enough, when legal weed becomes a thing in our neighbor nation to the north, about (or aboot) 150 stores are going to be selling legal cannabis to adults 19 and older, including tourists from the U.S. side of the border. But the way it stands now, local businesses are only going to be taking a little bit of the advantage off the situation that they could.
“At the present time you can’t smoke in hotel rooms, you can’t smoke in restaurants, you can’t utilize cannabis really anywhere even if you’re visitors,” Niagara Falls Tourism Chairman Councilor Wayne Thomson told the CBC, “so [local officials are] setting up separate or suggesting setting up separate locations that you could smoke in the rooms where there’s smoking or you could eat any product that has cannabis in your rooms privately.”
No official plans to legalize designated toking lounges are in place yet, but Thomson and others are taking first steps to see if the idea could work. A questionaire has been released to the public, asking them what they’d think about a slew of potential legal cannabis regulations, including the licensing of lounges for public use.
“At this point it’s just strictly a questionnaire and trying to get feedback so they make the right decisions,” said Thomson.
So far, Thomson said this feedback is mixed. “Some people feel the same as alcohol. They’re concerned about people driving and being influenced by cannabis. There are other people who think it’s a great opportunity for business and increase,” he said.
“We’re just trying to do our job and make sure if this is approved that we have something in place that is acceptable for the stakeholders, appropriate for tourism locations and do our job.”
Photo via Flickr user Lima Pix