Shoppers wait for Colorado pot shops to open

By By KRISTEN WYATT

DENVER (AP) — The new year may have arrived in Colorado, but the clock hasn't ticked down yet on another milestone: the opening of the nation's first recreational pot industry.

Pot shops are opening at 8 a.m. Marijuana fans across Denver didn't wait to celebrate the change on New Year's Eve.

Many fired up bongs and water pipes and cheered at a "Prohibition Is Over" party. Across town, a dispensary was setting up a food truck and coffee service for campers awaiting recreational sales at 8 a.m.

Pot activists hope the marijuana experiment will prove the legalization is a better alternative than the costly American-led drug war.

Only adults 21 and over can buy marijuana.

Legalization critics warn that increased access will lead to an increase in drug abuse.

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