Two Native American casinos may add large cannabis dispensaries to diversify – MarketWatch

It’s always nice to drink for free at casinos, which provide alcohol to gamblers to keep them betting long enough to more than make up the cost.

No word yet on whether pot will be provided at no cost to card sharks and slot machine mavens, but Foxwoods Resort Casino and Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort in North Carolina are exploring the addition of cannabis dispensaries nearby, according to a report this week from Leafly.

Both Harrah’s in North Carolina and Foxwoods in Connecticut are eyeing larger dispensaries of at least 25,000 square feet, with drive-through windows and consumption lounges. The cannabis sales could provide another revenue stream as casinos take on legalized sports betting and other competition.

Jeremy Wilson, the Cherokee government affairs liaison, told Leafly the dispensary will likely be called Kituwah Medical, although a final site has yet to be determined. One possible location is a stand-alone bingo hall that closed in 2020 due to COVID-19. The tribe plans to open the facility in about a year.

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In Connecticut, the Mashantucket Pequot tribal nation operates Foxwoods Resort Casino as one of the most popular gambling establishments in the Northeast. Talk is centered on a dispensary about a half mile from the casino near a golf course, restaurants and a shopping mall.

Retail sales to adults 21 and over at state-licensed stores may launch in 2022 in Connecticut, while a measure to approve medical use of cannabis is winding its way through the North Carolina legislature.

See: Tilray eyes U.S. cannabis market with MedMen move, stock gains

That being said, Native American lands aren’t bound by most state and federal laws and any taxes on cannabis go to the respective tribe. Earlier this year, the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians Tribal Council approved medical marijuana on Cherokee land.

See also: Want to invest in U.S. pot stocks? Here’s what you need to know

The Cannabis ETF THCX, -0.07% has gained 17.5% in the year to date, while the AdvisorShares Pure US Cannabis ETF MSOS, +1.93% has fallen 9.8%. The S&P 500 SPX, -0.03% has gained 19.9% in the period.

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