As California’s legal recreational cannabis market matures and delivery services make it less necessary to venture into a bricks-and-mortar dispensary, making the pot-shop experience memorable is more important than ever. Although that’s true of most kinds of retail, there’s an added incentive for marijuana merchants who, because cannabis remains illegal at the federal level, find themselves — and their ad dollars — shunned.
“We have a hard time advertising because we keep getting shut down on Facebook and so on because we’re [in] cannabis,” says Larry Scheffler the co-chief executive of Las Vegas-based entertainment-complex-meets-mammoth-sized-dispensaries Planet 13 Las Vegas and Planet 13 Orange County (the latter of which is on our list below). “[Customers] advertise for us when they take a picture. … It’s unbelievable. That’s what’s helping us grow so fast — it’s the social media.”
So fire up the Insta’, pick your favorite selfie filter and TikTok down the block — or in some cases across the Southland — for some IRL dispensary visits that are almost as mind-altering as the products they sell. And, if you know of a super cool pot shop that’s worth an in-person visit, send up a flare. PSA: State-licensed dispensaries only, please. Not sure if your weed-slinger is legit? Type the name or street address into capotcheck.com — California’s Cannabis Unified License Search portal — and it should pop right up (note, business names sometimes differ so using street addresses is the most expeditious route — and yes, those on the list below have been verified).
If it doesn’t pop up, we don’t recommend popping in.