For The Locals

On the ballot in November 2020, Public Question 1 asked New Jersey residents to vote on legalizing adult-use recreational cannabis which passed overwhelmingly with 67% voting in favor of it. This could have happened without a vote and through legislation, but…well, politics got in the way. Nonetheless, after the people’s voices were heard you’d think you could just go out and start making purchases. NOPE! More politics!

Finally on April 21st, 2021 the first legal purchases of adult-use cannabis in New Jersey were made. However if you’re an Ocean County resident, you have to leave home to get your fill either in Atlantic County (Egg Harbor Township) or one of two in Monmouth County (Neptune or Eatontown.)

As of April 2022, there are only TWO Ocean County towns that have applied and waiting for state approval: South Toms River and Lakehurst. They also happen to be two of the smallest towns in the county. On that November 2020 ballot, over 60% of Ocean County residents voted in favor to legalize and in South Toms River, the vote was nearly 76% in favor of it while Lakehurst was 72% in favor.

South Toms River approved three businesses — The Social Leaf, Altitude Cannabis, and Shore Cannabis — and now the borough and those businesses are in a holding pattern until the state moves on their applications. Whether pockets need to be lined with “donations” or otherwise, many Ocean County towns have already rejected the sale of legal cannabis and in this writer’s opinion it’s an antiquated way of thinking that cannabis is a “gateway drug” and that these damn hippie kids are going to just be blazing their joints out in public flaunting it. It just shows that people don’t know much about “stoner culture” where those who do partake really just want to use it to mellow and pass out on the couch, not go galivanting around town causing trouble. In fact, it’s the exact opposite.

For those looking to purchase from the three closest dispensaries:

Garden State Dispensary (Eatontown)
Adult use hours: M-Sat. 10am-8pm, Sun. 12pm– 6pm.
Medical marijuana hours: M-Sat. 9am – 9pm, Sun. 11am – 7pm.
59 Main St., Eatontown, NJ 07724. Phone: (848) 999-2005

Zen Leaf (Neptune)
Adult use hours: M-Sat. 9am – 10pm
Medical marijuana hours: M-F 8am – 10pm, Sat. 10am – 6pm, Sun. 8am – 6pm
2100 NJ-66, Neptune, NJ 07753. Phone: (908) 676-5936

The Botanist by CCF (Egg Harbor Township)
Adult use hours: Mon. 10am – 5pm, T-F 10am – 7pm, Sat. 8am – 7pm, Sun. 10am – 7pm
Medical marijuana hours: Mon 8am – 7pm, T-F 8am – 7pm, Sat. 8am – 7pm, Sun. 8am – 7pm
100 Century Drive, Egg Harbor Township, NJ 08234. Phone: (609) 277-7547