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MODESTO, Calif. (KTXL) — With almond blossoms, wine and the arts, Modesto now wants to add cannabis to the list of reasons to visit the city.

“I think it’s a good idea. It brings more revenue to the city,” said resident Alice Arellano. “This is a part of our economy. It’s part of our workforce, and supporting them is no different than supporting any other part of our local businesses.”

Todd Aaronson with Visit Modesto says they’re launching a first-of-its-kind campaign called the MoTownCannaPass, targeting cannabis-curious tourists. 

“They’re foodies, they’re wine lovers, they’re pet lovers, they’re dog people they’re outdoorsy, which fits into all the different types of travelers that we have coming here to Modesto,” Aaronson said.

Right now, only cannabis retail dispensary Cookies has signed on to be a partner with the CannaPass, but Visit Modesto hopes other dispensaries will join in. 

“It’s not just about come in secure this product, take an Artwalk, you know, go to the graffiti classic and go to the festival car show, do what you want while you’re here, don’t just come for this one thing,” Aaronson said.

“We have all the lakes, all the reservoirs. We have the farmers market; there’s a lot to do here,” Arellano told FOX40. “And this is just another thing.”

According to Visit Modesto, there are nearly two dozen cannabis-related businesses in the region wishing to educate the public.

For those who say they don’t want the city to be known for cannabis, Aaronson says they’re taking an educational approach. 

“If we were talking about a beer passport, this would be old news, they’re doing them all over the country and beer, wine, whiskey,” Aaronson explained. “They’re all regulated the exact same way as cannabis so we’re going down this gently, intelligently. We want to be an education aspect and help people learn and understand how to use it, and where to acquire it legally.”

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