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Flower Power Dispensary’s numbers have been “all over the place” in the wake of COVID-19, said co-owner Robert King. 

“Last Wednesday we did real well. The Wednesday before that we didn’t,” King said. “Nobody has a handle on anything right now. We started off well because we were new, then we saw a drag through the holidays, and then it started to pick up, but since everything’s closed down we’ve kind of stayed consistent with the people you could consider our patrons.”

Lotus Gold Dispensary saw a dip in sales amid a flurry of layoffs and unemployment, though they’ve leveled off now, said employee Cole Igert.

“It’s hard for someone to go out and actually purchase something when they don’t know about their next paycheck,” Igert said. “I feel like it’s starting to climb back up to where we normally were.”

Many dispensaries have changed how they interact with their customers, such as 918 Roots’ movement to drive-thru service, said owner Brad Satterfield.

“We shut down our dispensary and we’re doing business through our lobby window. They can’t come any further than the waiting room,” Satterfield said. “That was the only thing, and people were griping about that at first, but they’ve gotten used to it.”

Still, the nature of the product and its customer base means people want to come inside and check out what they’re buying, King said.

“We’ve put it out there that we want or prefer curbside, but it seems like people still prefer to come in,” King said. “Twenty-five percent of our people have transitioned to curbside. The rest are still coming in, but we control the traffic, and a few people have started going to online orders.”

Once people are inside the store, King said, Flower Power has taken measures to keep everyone safe. Employees work through a glass front with customers, who are asked to keep a certain distance. 

Even 918 Roots is changing its policy to accommodate customers who prefer to work face to face, Satterfield said.

“I think we’re going to start allowing one person into the lobby,” Satterfield said. “Our employees are wearing masks and stuff, so I think we’re still going to let someone back there.”

A shift to drive-thru service has been a blessing in disguise for some customers, Igert said.

“I mean, it’s very convenient to have the drive-thru, and plus it’s a lot quicker for people to stop by, especially for people who have a hard time getting into our building,” Igert said. “It’s a lot easier for them to stay in their car and us bring it to them.”

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