The Columbian / Associated Press

Tacoma legal weed sales enjoy a U.S. Open bump

Tacoma — Fescue grass isn’t the only grass making news during the U.S. Open.

Along with hats, caps, polo shirts and posters depicting Chambers Bay, U.S. Open golf fans are buying marijuana.

“There’s definitely an increase in business,” said Bryan Jastrzembski, executive director at Rainier on Pine, the shop that sold the city’s first retail marijuana nearly a year ago at 3111 S. Pine St.

“For a week leading up, there have been a lot more groups of four to eight, which is great,” Jastrzembski said, as the championship reached its final days. “Now our peak days come on any day of the week.”

Some visitors buy and some come simply to ask questions or look astounded that weed is actually for sale, out in the open – or perhaps in at the Open.

And how could he tell that these smokers and curiosity seekers were from out of town?

The tour buses in the parking lot are an indication, of course.

But he said there’s one more thing.

“It’s how they dress,” he said. “Funny hats and outfits are welcome any time.”

Meanwhile, golfers and fans were treated during the tournament to a small plane flying near the course trailing a banner announcing “Mary Mart Tacoma sells legal marijuana.”

Noel Roberts, owner of Mary Mart at 3005 Sixth Ave., said that although he’s seen a “downtick” in sales, he has heard from folks who saw the sign, and some followers of the game (funny hats or not) have come in to take a look.