The mint dispensary in Guadalupe will be the first to sell pot until midnight

Get ready for midnight cravings.

A Phoenix-area dispensary will remain open until 12 p.m. starting Friday, allowing toke sessions at dusk and tampons in the dark.

The Mint Dispensary LLC, based in Guadalupe, is gearing up to make history with its flagship store across from Arizona Mills at the corner of Priest Drive and Baseline Road in Tempe.

Never before in Arizona have budtenders served customers their favorite cannabis products at such a late hour.

“Every night we have people showing up, trying to get in to beat the 10 p.m. closing time,” said co-founder Raul Molina. Phoenix New Times.

The extended hours help both medical marijuana patients seeking a visit from the Sandman and also college students looking to unwind after a night out on Mill Avenue.

And after recreational marijuana was legalized for adults in Arizona just over a year ago, requests for late-night treats tripled, Molina said.

Mint CEO Eivan Shahara wants his three clinics in the valley to align with local pharmacies that serve many of the same patients, he said.

The new hours will “provide medicines to patients and products to customers when they need them most,” Shahara said.

This is good news for medical marijuana patients in the Phoenix metro area, like Michael C., who asked us not to release his last name for privacy reasons.

Michael, who works in delivery, remembers his time in Las Vegas, where he had unrestricted access to weed at the city’s many 24-hour dispensaries.

“I usually finish my deliveries late at night,” he said. “I’ve never seen anyone open so late here.”

The Arizona company has stores in Guadalupe, Mesa and North Phoenix. It also operates two stores in Michigan and is set to open doors in Missouri and Massachusetts.

Selling marijuana does not have the same time constraints as alcohol, which cannot be sold between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. in Arizona. But state municipalities have imposed their own constraints on the clock to close cannabis joints by 10 p.m.

Last month, the Guadalupe City Council voted to change its medical marijuana ordinance to allow dispensaries to stay open from 8 a.m. to midnight.

It’s also “part of the plan” to capitalize on the new hours to compete with bars, Molina said. Near the Guadalupe store in South Tempe, there are many bars serving competition.

“We believe cannabis is a much more responsible and safe way to enjoy your social outings,” Molina said.

The company has been blazing new trails since 2018, when it opened The Mint Café, a restaurant that makes cannabis-infused edibles. This is Michael’s favorite way to consume cannabis.

“I go for late-night cravings,” he says. “I usually get pizza or wings.”

The Guadalupe store has featured a drive-thru queue for food and flowers since the coronavirus pandemic ravaged Arizona.

He also sold a gigantic six-pound marijuana donut in 2021.

“We like to push the limits,” Molina said.

The Mint is the largest of a handful of emerging cannabis companies in the Grand Canyon State by retail space.

The Guadalupe store has 12,000 square feet of retail space, far exceeding the 5,000 square foot statutory limit in Phoenix, Mesa and most other Valley locations.

While other industry titans like Curaleaf, based in Wakefield, Massachusetts, have established permanent residences in the Valley of the Sun, The Mint has invested $3.5 million to plant its roots in Arizona and seek to expand eastward.

The company was profitable from the jump, with nearly $20 million in first-year sales. By 2020, revenues had more than doubled.

Now the company expects to get even busier, Molina said.

He plans to ask the Mesa and Phoenix city councils to change their marijuana ordinances as well.

The new hours coincide with the company’s fifth anniversary. On Fridays, adults over 21 can enjoy free tacos, freebies and deals from 2 p.m. to midnight, as well as a live DJ from 4:20 p.m. in the flagship store.

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