by James A. Bacon
LawnStarter has listed 2022’s Best Cities to Get Stoned, ranking nearly 100 of the biggest U.S. cities where recreational marijuana use is legal. Alexandria is the only one in Virginia that ranks in the top half. Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Newport News, and Chesapeake all rank in the bottom eight.
The ranking is based on access to dispensaries, head shops, consumption lounges, and cannabis-friendly lodging, as well as the availability of tours and events and even munchie relief (fast food), among other factors.
But never fear, potheads. “Virginia’s low rankings this year are probably temporary,” says LawnStarter communications manager Patricia Davis. “It takes time to roll out a budding cannabis program, so we expect to see Virginia’s big cities reaching new heights in future editions of our report.”
I will say that accessibility to cannabis ranks in my list of priorities right up there there with tattoo parlors and pitbull matches. I have zero desire to smoke weed. Wine is my relaxation drug of choice. But I’m a live-and-let-live kind of guy, and if others choose weed, that’s their business. And as long as marijuana is as carefully regulated for health and safety as alcohol is, I suppose a cannabis industry contributes marginally to Virginia’s quality of life.