Marijuana to stay in Manitou Springs, expands across the U.S.


Maggie's Farm on July 31, 2014, the day it first opened to recreational-marijuana sales. - BRYCE CRAWFORD
  • Bryce Crawford
  • Maggie's Farm on July 31, 2014, the day it first opened to recreational-marijuana sales.

The Manitou Springs marijuana question has been answered at last, with 1,801 people, thus far, voting in favor of stores like Maggie's Farm. 968 people voted against, giving the plant a 65 to 35 percent edge. The anti-pot effort was championed by Tim Haas, who owns the Garden of the Gods Trading Post, and people like resident Kari Kilroy.

"Unfortunately for me, it seems I chose to live in a community where marijuana is valued over common sense, science, health, education, the future of our children, etc. etc.," Kilroy wrote on Facebook this morning. "The only thing to do now is learn to live with it....or perhaps figure out something else."

Other detractors spoke up, with Jerry Wyatt posting to the People Against Retail Marijuana in Manitou Springs page: "I guess when you get stuck with a tattooed pot head and a bunch of money grubbers on counsel the end result is obvious," Wyatt wrote. "Maybe we will get to see the Fed's raid the self-medicater and smile afterall." 

For its part, the Keep Manitou Open campaign posted a comment addressing the fear that the issue would permanently divide the small town: "Now that the election is over, we look forward to coming back together and moving forward as a community. At the end of the day, we have shared values in Manitou Springs that everyone can agree on; inclusivity, an openness for a diversity of lifestyles, and a respect for our neighbors!"


• Voters in Palmer Lake again shot down recreational-marijuana sales, and passed a ballot question that would keep the town from considering the question again until 2017. Medical marijuana is still available.

Oregon, Alaska and Washington, D.C. joined Colorado and Washington as legalizers of marijuana, with D.C. taking the interesting tack of prohibiting retail stores but allowing possession and "gifting" of weed. A heavily Republican Congress still has to sign-off on the law, however.

• South Portland, Maine also made marijuana legal for adults, signifying further attempts to make the plant legal statewide in 2016, says the Marijuana Policy Project.

• Medical marijuana failed in Florida. "Nearly 58% of voters approved Amendment 2, which would have allowed seriously ill people to access medical marijuana if their doctors recommend it," says the MPP. "The measure failed because 60% approval was required for adoption."

Anti-marijuana supporters echoed a common refrain in celebration, according to WTVJ in Miami. "We are confident that the voters of Florida have made the right decision," Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said in a statement. "The people of Florida were too smart to buy into the weak language and huge loopholes into this amendment, which would have created de facto legalization of marijuana and given our children legal access."

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