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Waiting in line

A man waits in line at The Source dispensary, Saturday, July 1, 2017, in Las Vegas. (Photo: John Locher/AP)

Recreational marijuana becomes legal in Nevada

Recreational marijuana sales began shortly after midnight, just months after Nevada voters approved legalization in November, marking the fastest turnaround from the ballot box to retail sales in the country.

Hundreds of people lined up at Essence Cannabis Dispensary on the Las Vegas Strip. People were excited and well-behaved as a lone security guard looked on. A valet was available to park cars for the customers.

A cheer erupted when the doors opened.

Those 21 and older with a valid ID can buy up to an ounce of pot. Tourists are expected to make nearly two of every three recreational pot purchases in Nevada, but people can only use the drug in a private home.

Despite the limits on where people can get high and restrictions on where the industry can advertise, dispensaries worked furiously to prepare for the launch. They stamped labels on pot products, stocked up their shelves, added security and checkout stations, and announced specials.

Some facilities are in strip malls, while others, in stereotypical Las Vegas fashion, are in neighborhoods shared by strip clubs. Some dispensaries have ATMs inside because they only accept cash transactions for marijuana.

Nevada joins Colorado, Oregon, Washington and Alaska in allowing adults to buy the drug that’s still banned by the federal government. (AP)

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