Which States Have Recreational Dispensaries Open? A Quick List

Laws on recreational weed are complicated. They vary by state and they are often inconsistent with medical cannabis laws. With constantly changing policies and availability, it’s challenging to keep track of which states have recreational dispensaries open — so we compiled a list. 

Recreational vs. Medical Weed

Both recreational and medical cannabis are legal in many U.S. states. Currently, medical cannabis is legal in more states than recreational cannabis, though many of these laws may change. 

In most states, customers must have a valid medical card from that state to purchase medical weed. Recreational dispensaries, on the other hand, only require customers to be 21 or older with a valid ID. 

Where Is Weed Legal in the US?

Currently, recreational cannabis is legal in 23 states, while medical cannabis is legal in 38. Much of this is due to the U.S.’s complicated weed legalization timeline dating back to Oregon’s decriminalization in 1973. Ongoing studies of cannabis’s benefits pushed many states to legalize the sale and use of weed, and question why it was prohibited in the first place. 

Which States Have Recreational Dispensaries Open?

As of 2023, nearly half of the U.S. has fully legalized the use and sale of recreational cannabis. Recreational dispensaries are open in the following states:

  • Alaska
  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Illinois
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nevada
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • New York
  • Oregon
  • Rhode Island
  • Vermont
  • Virginia
  • Washington

In addition to the above states, recreational cannabis was recently legalized in Minnesota and Delaware, though dispensaries may not open for some time.

Which States Have Medical Dispensaries Open?

The sale and use of medical cannabis with a valid card is currently legal in 38 states, including the 23 listed above. Though the laws still vary by state, you can find medical cannabis dispensaries (but not recreational dispensaries) in the following states:

  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Florida
  • Hawaii
  • Iowa
  • Louisiana
  • Mississippi
  • New Hampshire
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Dakota
  • Utah
  • West Virginia

In Which States Is Weed Illegal?

Both medical and recreational cannabis are still illegal in several states, though some of these laws are actively being rewritten. Additionally, while THC products are banned, some states allow the sale of other cannabinoids, such as CBD, for medical use. The states where you will not find a cannabis dispensary include:

  • Georgia
  • Idaho
  • Indiana
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky 
  • Nebraska
  • North Carolina
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Wyoming
  • Wisconsin

Weed Legalization in Massachusetts

Cannabis was decriminalized in Massachusetts in 2008, before being legalized for medical use in 2012 and recreational use in 2016. Recreational dispensaries finally opened in Massachusetts in late 2018, and the impacts of the state’s now-booming cannabis market continue to positively impact communities today. 

At Harbor House Collective, we aim to be part of the positive progress. We offer our community high-quality, responsibly-produced buds in a welcoming atmosphere where newcomers and experts alike can experience the benefits of recreational weed. Visit us to learn more and check out our selection of all the best products in Massachusetts. 

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