Free samples stall Anchorage rec marijuana store’s opening

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The Anchorage Assembly has postponed the opening of what would have been the city’s first recreational marijuana shop, alleging that the store owner violated state laws by giving away free samples.

Assembly members unanimously passed a resolution Tuesday night to suspend final inspections that are required for Arctic Herbery to open for business, according to Alaska Public Media. The assembly passed the resolution after the Alcohol & Marijuana Control Office issued two violations in two weeks against store owner Bryant Thorp for handing out free samples to customers.

Thorp apparently did not try to conceal his giveaway last month, which made state and national headlines.

“When you hand someone a joint or a nug, they kind of get excited about it,” Thorp said in the reports.

“I can’t emphasize enough how proactive I believe this body will be in yanking the license or bringing back bad operators to answer to the community,” assembly member Amy Demboski said during Tuesday’s meeting, according to

The assembly has requested Thorp to appear at its Nov. 15 meeting, KTUU reported.

Alaska’s first recreational cannabis store opened Saturday in Valdez.