The Roaring 420s Lounge: Buffalo, NY

The State of The Stoned: The Roaring 420s Lounge

Birthed from necessity, the Roaring 420s Lounge began as a collective response to a dangerous gap in the cannabis market. “We started out attending popup events,” the founders recall.

This incident propelled them to establish a haven for safe cannabis consumption. In October 2021, what started as a grassroots initiative blossomed into The Roaring 420s Lounge – a private membership association prioritizing safety and knowledge.

What makes John and his operation so intriguing to me is the lounge’s innovative business model. Since opening in 2022, they have evolved into a dual structure of a non-profit club and a for-profit research firm. I am not usually a fan of these organization structures, but they have done a great job balancing community service with commercial viability. “We developed software for inventory tracking, member registration, and data analysis,” CEO, John Averill explains. “This not only supports our non-profit mission but also catapults our for-profit arm into a valuable market research resource.”

The Lounge’s commitment to product testing set new safety benchmarks in New York’s cannabis scene. “We were the first primarily recreational-side business to consistently test products in NY,” John states proudly. Their proactive approach has significantly influenced statewide testing standards and practices.

However, the journey hasn’t been without challenges. Navigating societal misconceptions and advertising barriers, they’ve had to continuously adapt. “Being a business that caters to the cannabis industry gets you lumped in with cannabis businesses,” John shared, highlighting the societal hurdles they face.

Looking forward, The Roaring 420s Lounge envisions a bold expansion. “We see our business becoming two distinct yet interlinked entities,” he articulates. Their plan involves a for-profit cannabis lifestyle brand offering unique products and software solutions, alongside a non-profit entity dedicated to consumer education and safe usage. This approach aims to blend commercial success with community responsibility.

The Roaring 420s Lounge isn’t new to New York’s cannabis industry; it’s been shaping its future since day 1. From its grassroots origins to its innovative business model and impact on industry standards, the Lounge exemplifies adaptability, responsibility, and vision. As they look to the future, their dual-structured approach promises to reinforce their role as a leader in safe cannabis consumption and industry evolution.