Colorado's first hash bars opening today

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In our first Ask a Stoner, we featured a question about whether legal, recreational pot smoking clubs like the ones found in Amsterdam could be created in Colorado, thanks to Amendment 64 passing. Turns out, not one but two pot-friendly lounges will open today.

Earlier today, marijuana attorney Rob Corry announced the opening of his new venture, Club 64: a private, members-only establishment dedicated to recreational cannabis use. The club will open in time for New Year's Eve festivities, starting at 4:20 p.m. today in an undisclosed location whose address is available only to members via the group's website. According to the press release circulating around the Internet, the club will allow for "private legal use of cannabis, where people will exercise their constitutional right to celebrate and make history."

Says Corry in that same release: "Club 64 is a legal cannabis club, the first of its kind since the voters of Colorado wisely cast off the shackles of Prohibition....This will be a great way to ring in the New Year for Members, with music, dancing, conversation, and Cannabis." Membership is limited to "deserving individuals invited to join the exclusive club" who are 21 and up and who will pay $50 for a year-long membership ($30 if you sign up today). Corry says the club doesn't violate either indoor smoking laws (those are limited to medical marijuana and tobacco -- and recreational marijuana qualifies as neither) or public consumption laws ("this is private consumption, members only").

For more information,visit the group's website or its Facebook page.

Corry's project isn't the only one in Colorado, either. Word has spread over the last week about a pot-friendly coffee shop that opened in Del Norte. Rumor has it that The White Horse Inn will hand out "free" marijuana with purchase of an overpriced cup of joe ($20, say), and while onwer Paul Lovato says that isn't exactly how things will work, it's close.

Lovato leased two buildings in Del Norte that are connected through a shared door. One one is leased as a business property, he says, while the other is a residential property. "The White Horse Inn will be a coffee shop, head shop, 420 shop, etc.," Lovato says. "It'll have a full coffee menu. but won't serve anything infused. No pot will be served or sold or distributed. But next door, at the private property, marijuana is complimentary."

He says he hopes people will also stop by for coffee, but admits that's not the main goal. And with the cheap leases of Del Norte, he doesn't have to sell much coffee to break even on his $400 lease for both properties. "This is where I can spread the love of cannabis that I have to people," he explains. "I grow my own and can distribute it to whoever I want to for free. If that brings business to our coffee shop, than that is awesome. So be it. I can open and lose money for five years if I want to."

Lovato says the smoking lounge will be closed off from view of the general public, and that eventually he hopes to open a retail marijuana store out of the coffee shop when laws allowing such businesses are eventually passed. The shop was scheduled to open January 1, but Lovato says he is already open. "Once I signed the lease, I was ready to go. Why wait?" he says. "I'm here to let people know Amendment 64 is real and it passed. People say I'm bending the words. I'm not. I'm reading them and applying them."

More from our marijuana news archive: "Cannabis Time Capsule: "Anti-symbol Hippie Ponders Future in Jail"; "At Greyhound rest stop, Lamar cops find "abnormally heavy" pillow filled with marijuana"

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