Welcome to Weedtown, U.S.A.
A company specializing in cannabis products has announced it will buy an entire tiny town in southeastern California and turn it into a “cannabis-friendly” resort destination and cannabis production hub.
American Green Inc. is a publicly-traded company (ticker: ERBB, if you must know) whose businesses include age-verifying cannabis vending machines, cannabis-oriented apps, and a pot farm in Phoenix. It wants Nipton, a near-ghost town in San Bernardino County with a fluctuating population of only a few dozen, to eventually offer an array of pot-friendly tourist attractions, including “cannabis-product retail outposts, artist-in-residence programs, culinary events, and bed-and-breakfast lodging.”
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It also wants to develop Nipton into a site for growing and processing pot, and says it’s in discussions with other companies that make edible cannabis products. It also says it will focus on sustainable development by expanding the town’s existing solar power array, and hopes that the project will present a model for using weed to revitalize small towns.
Nipton sits on the edge of the Mojave Desert by the Nevada border, making it a hard sell for some travelers. But the grand vistas may actually add to its appeal for cannabis-oriented trips. The town has been for sale since at least January, when the asking price was $5 million. Longtime owner Gerald Freeman bought the town in the mid-1980s, and reportedly invested heavily in building a solar power system, and revamping services including a bed and breakfast, coffee shop, and RV park.