As the city hurtles toward a full reopening, drinks are now flowing freely at bars and restaurants as Chicagoans emerge from their couches and try to get back to normal.
Weed smokers, however, still have nowhere to legally get stoned in public, meaning pot use largely remains relegated to the shadows over a year after the drug was fully legalized statewide.
In other states, public consumption lounges and smoke-filled party buses are driving tourism by highlighting what recreational weed is supposed to be all about: Having a good time.
“People want to smoke marijuana in places that they couldn’t before because it was taboo and illegal,” said Andy Seeger, a cannabis consultant who previously worked as an industry analyst in Chicago. “Just like a bar, just like coffee, this a huge experiential thing.”
Andy Seeger LinkedIn
But as it stands, Seeger said Illinois’ highly regulated pot market is “incredibly unfun,” likening the dispensary experience to “standing in line at the pharmacy” and criticizing existing pot firms for failing to create safe havens for getting high.
“They have no interest in helping the stoners or