With the increasing acceptance of marijuana in the United States, the herb has popped up in some of the most unexpected places. In addition to more frequent medical usage, recreational laws have opened the way for new trends and traditions. We’ve talked about “pot parties” for the elderly before, in which seniors learn about medical marijuana products and how to use them for their health.
But, what about hosting a marijuana bar at your wedding reception? Couples in love are now showing their support for cannabis at their weddings. Keep reading to learn more about this trend.
What Is a Marijuana Bar?
At some wedding receptions, you’ll find a cocktail bar where you can buy alcoholic drinks. Sometimes the couple covers the cost of the bar, letting you get whatever you want. A similar principle applies to marijuana bars. In place of a bartender, a budtender runs a cannabis bar featuring a selection of marijuana products for the guests’ perusal. The dispensary employee can answer any questions visitors have so they can partake responsibly.
Why Do Couples Have Marijuana Bars at Their Weddings?
A couple can have many reasons to include a marijuana bar at their reception. Here are a few that we can think of:
- They Have a Marijuana-Themed Wedding: Some couples go beyond the bar and have marijuana-themed decor, attire, favors and more at their ceremony and reception. But, no worries if you want to take a subtler approach — plenty of weddings have only a bar or a few other marijuana-related elements.
- One or Both of Them Have Ties to the Cannabis Industry: Sometimes, the couple considers the marijuana industry an essential part of their lives and wants to share their appreciation.
- They Want to Offer an Alternative to Alcohol: Perhaps somebody from the wedding party or a beloved guest has issues with alcohol. In this kind of situation, the couple can provide a marijuana bar instead to provide an alternative that doesn’t trigger anyone who struggles with alcohol abuse.
If you’re planning a wedding, you might have other reasons in mind. As you can see, marijuana bars can enhance a wedding in so many aspects.
Other Ways to Integrate Marijuana in Your Wedding
Certain couples who have a marijuana bar at their receptions go the extra mile by offering their guests cannabis in different ways, such as:
- Wedding Favors: Sometimes, the new spouses send off their guests with small favors of marijuana joints or edibles.
- Designated Cannabis Use Areas: For privacy and separation from guests who don’t want to inhale marijuana, some couples set up a tent or another closed-off area where guests can partake.
- Unique Welcome Baskets: When out-of-town wedding guests check into their hotels, some couples offer “welcome baskets” featuring small snacks and favors. Certain spouses-to-be go even farther and — carefully — add a few cannabis goodies to the basket. But, these baskets should be clearly labeled for unaware guests.
Marijuana Weddings as Activism
Including marijuana bars in your wedding can mean so much more than a quick high for your guests. It also shows you embrace recreational marijuana as another way to have fun, as long as you take the right precautions. Your marijuana bar might be the first time a guest can try cannabis in a comfortable, accepting environment. Some guests may even be prospective patients who need to try cannabis in a judgment-free place before deciding to start treatment. Whether you focus a little or a lot on your favorite bud, you’re working toward reducing the stigma associated with it.
Where Are Marijuana Weddings Legal?
You can have marijuana at your wedding in states that have legalized recreational cannabis. At the time of writing, these states include:
However, even though these states let adults 21 or older use marijuana, there are still laws you must follow to use it legally. Just like alcohol, cannabis has regulations intended to promote responsible use. Research your state and local rules carefully before including marijuana on your big day.
Live somewhere that doesn’t allow recreational cannabis? You can still raise awareness about marijuana legalization. Tell your guests they can donate to an advocacy organization like NORML instead of a wedding gift. To educate your guests without making them feel like you’re forcing something on them, leave facts about cannabis-related issues in a place like your reception tables or near your wedding programs.
Legal Considerations to Keep in Mind
While couples can easily include alcohol in their wedding celebrations, marijuana has additional laws surrounding it that make integrating it into your wedding a little harder. Recreational laws include possession limits, intoxication laws and other regulations. In certain states, cities and municipalities decide cannabis laws, including provisions on sales. So, planning a wedding involving marijuana on your own can get complicated.
We recommend working with a planner or dispensary with a good grasp of local marijuana laws if you plan on having a cannabis bar at your event. You should also get extra help if you plan on having a designated cannabis area or marijuana favors. Since federal law still considers marijuana illegal, you must take care to follow state rules.
Planning a Marijuana-Positive Wedding
In addition to carefully organizing the legal aspects of your wedding, certain venues and locations have their own rules regarding cannabis. For example, couples considering a welcome basket featuring marijuana products should check with the hotel they’re staying at first. Some hotels don’t allow marijuana on their premises or ban the use of cannabis. If you want to have your wedding in another city, make sure it accepts the concept of a cannabis bar.
For example, even though California lets people over 21 participate in certain recreational activities, municipalities can still prohibit dispensaries from operating in the area. In one of these places, you wouldn’t be able to have a marijuana bar because it would likely count as a business activity.