New Yorkers lit up joints in the East Village on Thursday to celebrate the unofficial cannabis holiday of 4/20 in the wake of the area’s newest legal dispensary.
The 8th legal dispensary in New York State and the 5th in the Big Apple opened its doors at 33 Union Square on April 19 to a flood of tears from the owner and East Harlem native Keshawn Warner, who founded Dazed. Warner shared the moment with his father who became his very first customer but lamented that his mother could not see it.
“Having a supportive family structure around helps get through those times. It was a little extra emotional for me. My mom is not here,” Warner said with tears in his eyes. “I have supportive family, supportive friends, and have the support of my neighborhood.”
Customers flocked to the new establishment on Thursday to celebrate April 20 in a puff of smoke while neighbors welcomed the storefront.
Laurie and Kevin Gibson are traveling around the United States in a camper van and wanted to support a licensed vendor who has been impacted by selling in the past. For the Gibsons, stores like Dazed have been a long time coming.
“I think it’s awesome. Long overdue, way long overdue. More people should be smoking and not drinking as much,” Gibson said.
John McNamara agreed. He arrived in the morning to make a quick purchase.
“The only thing I don’t like is that they are smoking on the subways in the morning. Are they going to drink whiskey too?” McNamara asked.
Outside the dispensary, people gathered in Union Square Park to blaze the day away. From solitary smoking to a social spliff pass around, New Yorkers marked the day with a buzz.