Mountain News: Vending machines next for cannabis sales 

click to enlarge PHOTO SUBMITTED - GREEN ON THE GO Zazz Marijuana vending machines could be coming to Colorado soon.
  • Photo submitted
  • GREEN ON THE GO Zazz Marijuana vending machines could be coming to Colorado soon.

AVON, Colo. — Herbal Elements, a store licensed to sell medical marijuana in unincorporated Eagle County, between Vail and Avon, may have the first vending machine for cannabis.

The Vail Daily reports that some 200 people recently turned out to see how the machine works, even if the machine was temporarily in Avon, which wants nothing to do with marijuana. The machine lacked marijuana.

Called ZaZZ, the machine provides a secure way to make sales to regulars while freeing up display space and store employees. Representatives of the company liken it to the self-checkout areas at grocery and further note that they see "edible" cannabis, as opposed to smoking, as the wave of the future.

343 locals get pins for 100-plus days

ASPEN, Colo. — What the Aspen Daily News describes as a ski bum badge of distinction has been given out to 343 locals. The pins awarded by the Aspen Skiing Co. recognize 100 days or more of skiing at the company's four ski mountains in and near Aspen and Snowmass Village. Company employees were excluded.

An Aspen Mountain regular, Mikey Wechler, skied all but one of the 155 days that it was open. On that day of hooky, he skied at Beaver Creek. He has missed just four days in the last 10 years.

Those getting pins ranged in age from eight years old to 78.

The company began the program five years ago, after beginning automated access. This is the most people who have earned the pins in any one year. Ski company representatives attributed the increase to a season that started early and snow conditions that remained good.

Plus, ski season isn't over yet in Aspen. After closing on Easter, the bull wheels resumed operations again last week and will do so once more this weekend.

New grocery store highest in the chain

FRISCO, Colo. — The Whole Foods store that opened on April 29 in Frisco has a unique distinction. At 2,800 metres in elevation, it is the highest of any of the 378 stores in the chain. Most are in the United States, but a few are in Vancouver and elsewhere in Canada.

Founded in 1980, Whole Foods is unlike most other grocery chains in many respects. It has a great selection of organic goods, of course, but also stopped distributing disposable plastic bags in 2008. Then this: a feng shui consultant.

The Summit Daily News reports that the consultant, Alex Stark, blessed the new 32,000-square-foot store in Frisco last week before a tour of local dignitaries. Standing in front of the store, he mixed gin, rice, and cinnabar. They represent the heavens, people, and the earth. He also hung crystal balls in specific spots in the back rooms.

Tables in the store's café were made from beetle killed pine trees and old barns, and the café also has a retired gondola from the local Keystone ski area that is outfitted with a table and Bluetooth-compatible speakers, reports the Daily News. There's also a special room for mothers who want to nurse infants in private. Skis and snowboards have been pressed into new service as signs.

Ban on animals in circuses

KETCHUM, Idaho — Where does an elephant sit? In the common joke, the answer is anywhere it pleases.

But five students from a local school in Ketchum hope to make it illegal for circus elephants to sit anywhere in Ketchum, Sun Valley, or Blaine County.

The Idaho Mountain Express reports that the five students read a prepared statement to the Ketchum City Council while symbolically bound together in a rope that simulated circus chains. They said that lions and tigers in circuses are confined to small cages 99 per cent of the time.

As for circus elephants, they are sometimes beaten and prodded with heavy bull hooks. Those in circuses live to an average of 14 years, compared to elephants in the wild, which live to be 70.

The students advocated that circuses use only human performers, as does Cirque du Soleil.

The response of the council?

"If a small community like ours can't make a statement like this, then why are we elected officials?" said Councilman Baird Gourlay.

Circuses exhibiting trained wild animals have appeared in two local, down-valley towns in recent years, but not in Ketchum or Sun Valley.

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