North Carolina: $50 Million Marijuana Superstore Opens in Three Weeks

In three weeks the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (ECBI) will open their marijuana superstore on tribal land, accessible by those 21 and older regardless of whether or not they’re a tribal member.

On April 20, the unofficial marijuana holiday, the ECBI will open their marijuana superstore, located at the previous home of a bingo hall that cost over $50 million to refurbish. The Great Smoky Cannabis Company is located near Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort roughly three hours from Charlotte and 4.5 hours from Raleigh.

In September members of the EBCI voted overwhelmingly in favor of a measure to legalize recreational marijuana for everyone 21 and older. This allows the tribe’s planned medical marijuana superstore to open for recreational consumers rather than being exclusive to medical marijuana patients.

The referendum approved by voters asked “Do you support legalizing the possession and use of cannabis for persons who are at least twenty-one (21) years old, and require the EBCI Tribal Council to develop legislation to regulate the market?” The measure passed with 70% support.

According to Lee Griffin, human resources director for the tribe’s cannabis subsidiary Qualla Enterprises LLC, the store will employ at least 350 people.

The tribe’s reservation consists of nearly 57,000 acres covering five counties; Cherokee, Graham, Jackson, Macon, and Swain Counties.

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