Since AlaskaBUDS first blazed the trail, it seems that the floodgates have opened. At least four more marijuana stores hope to open in Bethel. At least, that’s the number of stores that have notified the city.
The location of one of those stores may be very familiar to many people in town. The Q2 Laundromat closed down this week, and that was to make way for Alaskan Grown Cannabis. Kalla Peacock already owns a marijuana store with the same name in Kotzebue, and Peacock plans to expand to Bethel with another store on Tundra Way.
Another location rang a bell with some city council members. Last year the city leased a property on 3rd Avenue; that building could soon be housing Kusko Kush. The lease was signed by Naim Shabani, who co-owns Kusko Cab, and Jared Karr, an attorney.
Lastly, a restaurant owner wants to convert a former restaurant next to the Kuskokwim Inn on Ptarmigan St. into The Green Store. Thae Jeoun, the owner of Wasabi Bay, wants a piece of the action.
The proposed stores will all have to obtain conditional use permits from the city and a distribution license from the state’s Alcohol and Marijuana Control Office (AMCO).
There is no limit on the maximum number of licenses that AMCO can award, although the city could choose to restrict that number.