Pot smokers light up at Ellensburg hookah bar

Pot smokers light up at Ellensburg hookah bar
ELLENSBURG, Wash. -- Randy McPhee has no problem admitting he's smoked pot for decades, legal or not.

"I grew up in the sixties and it was kind of the thing to do,” Randy said.

Randy did have some run-ins with the law. But, now that he can legally light up, that's just what he plans to do at The Lounge, an Ellensburg Hookah Bar.

“We don't have any big screen TVs or video games,” said Lounge owner, TJ McDonald. “We force people to sit down and converse ate with each other."

Customers previously stuck to tobacco and other legal substances. Thursday night, however, TJ has invited his customers to smoke their own pot.

"It's not as bad as a lot of people think it is. I never could understand that,” Randy said.

You may be asking yourself if it’s legal. KIMA spoke to the Ellensburg city attorney. He says the recent state law that legalizes recreational marijuana has created a gray area in enforcement. Right now, police would have a hard time breaking this up.

Marijuana laws aside, state law prohibits anyone from smoking in a place of employment. However, TJ said he's had no legal troubles since he opened the place.

TJ wouldn't allow us inside because he wanted to protect the privacy of club members.

Randy tells us the atmosphere is relaxing. He says the pot helps relieve his stroke-related anxiety.

"It just calms me down all the time. I don't smoke a lot of it,” Randy said.

Club members arrive to smoke up and wind down. TJ thinks it's this type of calm atmosphere that's making a loud and clear statement in history.

"I just feel that this is the beginning-of-the-end of the cannabis prohibition and I'm proud to be a part of it,” TJ said.

TJ says he is not selling weed and is offering rides home to anyone who needs one.