- Associated Press - Saturday, November 17, 2018

LEICESTER, Mass. (AP) - The first two recreational marijuana stores in Massachusetts will be opening at the same exact time next week.

A spokeswoman for Cultivate in Leicester said Saturday the store planned to move up its regular 10 a.m. start time to 8 a.m. on Tuesday.

New England Treatment Access in Northampton will also begin selling to recreational customers at 8 a.m. Tuesday.

Both stores received final regulatory approval Friday from the state Cannabis Control Commission to open next week. They will be the first commercial marijuana stores to operate in the eastern U.S.

The openings will come more than two full years after Massachusetts voters authorized legal recreational marijuana. Retail sales were originally slated to begin on July 1 but regulatory approvals were delayed.

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