It appears the pandemic may be nearing its final chapters as COVID-19 restrictions are lifted across Michigan this week. In a strange way, I think I’m going to miss the government forcing me to have lazy afternoons at home with a bong. I’m still not quite ready to start shaking hands.
But as Greater Lansing begins to come back to life this summer, there are plenty of new reasons to leave the house, get real high and do some post-pandemic stoner sightseeing.
As yet another valuable public service to our readers, I’ve assembled a list of the best places to be blazed in Greater Lansing this summer. Now, I can’t advise actually smoking pot at any of these places; that would be illegal. Just figure that part out for yourself and get there safely.
I’ve been going to Preuss Pets since I was a young child — though then in Okemos — and remember always being enamored by the elaborate reef tank systems inside. I even convinced my dad to buy a porcupine pufferfish. It lived at my childhood home for more than a decade.
The magic of Preuss Pets hasn’t been lost on me as an adult, even more so when I’m baked. The koi pond and reptile room are among my favorite curiosities. And either I was more stoned than I thought, or some of the birds can actually talk. I got into an argument with one last week.
Scott Sunken Gardens
Greater Lansing is filled with scenic outdoor adventures: Hawk Island Park; the entirety of the Lansing River Trail; the Fenner Nature Center; Beal Botanical Garden at Michigan State University. It can be hard to pick just one single spot for a warm-weather stoner adventure.
But after years of meticulous planning and careful attention to detail, the Scott Sunken Garden has truly become a beautiful new spot to kick back, relax and unwind after a long day at work. The place is usually empty too, making a great place to be alone with your thoughts in peace.
Not only were plants from the original gardens moved west, but the stonework surrounding the site was also disassembled, carefully catalogued and then put back together brick-by-brick in 2019. It’s a stunning project with gorgeous landscaping and some historical significance to boot.
Horrocks Farm Market
If you can stand being stoned in front of large crowds of people, then Horrocks Farm Market is one of the best places to be. Grab a cup of gelato, a caramel apple, some fresh Groovy Donuts or a slice of pizza and meander the garden section. Get lost in the beer aisle. Pick up some carryout from a food truck or grab some fresh produce and try out a new recipe at home.
I’ve been to Horrocks at least two dozen times, usually while high, and still find myself discovering an array of new products every time I walk in the door. Be prepared to get caught up in traffic jams in the parking lot and in their narrow aisleways. Also be prepared to spend a few hours — and maybe a $100 or so — finding so many things that you never knew you needed.
There’s something really special about the ability to eat as much as your stomach can handle. And there’s no better place in Greater Lansing to push your limits than Asian Buffet in Okemos. My personal record — of course amplified by the munchies — is five separate trips up to the buffet, which probably included a dozen crab Rangoons and a literal mountain of deep-fried sushi. The sweet, tangy and savory combinations are endless. The prices are affordable.
The language barrier with the staff also conveniently makes for a relatively limited social interaction, which I’ve really come to appreciate over the last year. Less small talk. More eating.
This pothead hotspot — billed as “Michigan’s most unique shopping experience” — is just a short drive north of Lansing in Dewitt Township. And with over 40,000 square feet of antiques and collectibles, you can easily spend a full afternoon there and still not see everything inside.
I prefer slow rolling my way through each aisle after smoking some potent indica products. I found that some of the jazzier sativa blends can make the whole experience a bit overwhelming.
The best part? You can find a wide array of vintage ashtrays there for some unique stoner gifts.
Special Mention: Potter Park Zoo
Nobody likes to be totally ripped around families with small children. It puts parents in the awkward situation of explaining why that guy’s eyes are so red and why he smells like a skunk. Thankfully, some of the odors at the zoo help to mask the odor, but it’s still a dicey experience.
The Potter Park Zoo simply has too many people and too many children to be comfortably high.
I know what you’re thinking: But wouldn’t it be fun to watch all the different animals? No. Seeing such natural beauty trapped in a cage, often alone, is actually a really depressing experience — emotions that are only heightened after a joint or two. I tried it. It sucked. I won’t be going back.
Kyle Kaminski is City Pulse’ managing editor and a cannabis enthusiast who has been smoking marijuana just about every day for the last decade. Almost weekly, Kaminski samples some of the best cannabis products available in Greater Lansing, gets real high and writes about them.