Galena bed and breakfast attracts tourists for 4/20 celebration

GALENA, Ill. (KCRG) – Jessi Smith and her friends are from the Cedar Rapids area, but on Wednesday they stayed at the Aldrich Guest House in Galena to celebrate 4/20, which is not only a date, but it is also a term that alludes to marijuana consumption.

“It’s so freeing,” Smith confessed. “I do not have to be scared that someone is going to call somebody like the cops, like I am not scared that I am going to get in trouble for it.”

Unlike in Iowa, marijuana became legal for recreational use for adults in 2020 in Illinois. When that happened, Robert and Douglas Mahan decided to give their bed and breakfast a twist by building a potting shed right next to it.

”We did that so that people have a place to consume in a responsible, legal setting where they do not have to sneak, they do not have to hide out, they do not have to wonder if they are going to be judged or looked down on because that is not what we are about and that is not what cannabis is about,” Robert said.

Aldrich Guest House is rated as the number one bed and breakfast in Galena by TripAdvisor. The Mahans told TV9 it is also the only cannabis-friendly bed and breakfast in Illinois.

The owners said their guests usually come from somewhere between three to six hours away, but they come from all walks of life.

“We have got everything from retired farmers that come out here, we have got medical patients that travel and used to have to hide those things and now they are able to travel freely and just use their medicine,” Douglas mentioned. “One morning there was a day trader from Chicago and a hog farmer and us and we thought, ‘How cool! That is what we want. And it might not be everyone’s preferred experience, but we want everyone to feel welcomed.

They said their ten beds were all full for 4/20, a day they said is about celebrating openness and tolerance.

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