Legal sales of marijuana begin Monday in the state of California, in cities and counties that opted to allow it after voters approved Prop 64 in Nov. 2016.
Of Sacramento's 30 medical marijuana dispensaries, the city says 27 want to sell recreational - or "adult-use" - cannabis as well. Local permits are still getting finalized and will be officially issued later this week, at which point ABC10 will be able to learn how many - and which - dispensaries will be open Jan. 1.
All About Wellness at 19th and S streets in Midtown is normally closed on New Year's Day, but this Monday they will be open for business, starting at 10 a.m.
"It's like a whole new beginning for us," owner Phil Blurton told ABC10 News. "Now we've got just that much more to learn and how to take care of more people."
All About Wellness has been selling medical marijuana in the heart of Sacramento for eight years now. Starting Jan. 1, Blurton plans on selling recreational or "adult-use" cannabis as well.
While Sacramento's medical marijuana dispensaries have required local permits, the state has never had a framework for legal sales. In the state's eyes, Jan. 1 will be the first time that cannabis of any kind - medical or adult-use - will be sold legally and regulated.
"Well, it's a certain level of excitement, for sure. You know, it's been a long time coming, but then there's the apprehension, too," Blurton said. "We're not really sure what's going to happen. You know, we don't know really what to expect New Year's Day. Is there going to be a lot of people here? We really don't know."
Blurton said he was initially unsure whether to apply for the permit to sell adult-use cannabis, due to the store's focus on medical marijuana and the patients who use it.
"But we thought, you know, have an even playing field, we should go ahead and get the license and so that way we have the opportunity to share the product with a lot of different people," he said.
For folks who may be newer to cannabis come Jan. 1, Blurton encourages them to start with a smaller dose.
"Our theory here is, 'less is best.' I would rather give you something and you say, 'It had zero effect,' than give you too much because each individual-- you know, some people can eat 100 mg, some people can eat 5 mg," he said. "It's not like alcohol where it comes on gradually. You know, if you smoke cannabis, it's pretty immediate effects, so, you know, we will definitely be telling our recreational people just go slow, make sure they get home before they try it."
As for whether a long line of customers will be problematic, Blurton looks no farther than across the street from his dispensary, where the restaurant Ramen House often has a line of customers stretching out the door.
"I think it's great they have a line; that means they have a great business," Blurton said. "I don't think our line's going to be any bigger than the Ramen House. I hope it could be though! That would be pretty cool, right?"
He'll find out 10 a.m. Monday.
State and local taxes will claim nearly 30 percent of what Sacramento dispensaries bring in. Experts predict California's legalized cannabis industry will bring billions of dollars to the state in a matter of years.
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