Some folks think it’s only natural that the bohemian tourist town of Eureka Springs gets a medical marijuana dispensary.
Mayor Robert “Butch” Berry said he would like to have two, if not more.
“I would like to have four if we could get them,” Berry said. “Eureka Springs was originally founded on the basis of its healing waters. … Medical marijuana will dovetail perfectly into what has already been a place to come for rejuvenation and healing.”
That comparison rankles John Cross.
“There’s a lot of difference between spring water and marijuana,” said Cross, 82, chairman of the board of Cornerstone Bank in Eureka Springs.
While some people think a dispensary would help tourism in Eureka Springs, Cross thinks it might do the opposite.
Cross cited a May 17 Fox News report indicating that the legalization of marijuana (not just medical marijuana) in Colorado had turned Durango into “a haven for recreational pot users, drawing in transients, panhandlers and a large number of homeless drug addicts.”
“People might stay away because it’s become a marijuana-type city,” Cross said of Eureka Springs’ future. “A medicinal marijuana destination could pose a risk to our existing tourism business, and I don’t want to take that risk.”
Berry’s hope to get more than one medical marijuana dispensary is probably far-fetched, Dr. Dan Bell told the Eureka Springs City Council on Monday.
“I’ve seen our mayor quoted that he hopes we’re going to get two in Eureka,” said Bell, who wants to get a dispensary for the town. “I quite honestly think that’s very unlikely. If we get one, it’s going to be amazing. … There are four other groups in Eureka vying for this.