KANSAS CITY, Mo. (WIBW) – One day after voters legalized recreational marijuana in Missouri, a hospitality group announced a new entertainment district project in the Kansas City metro area that will include spaces to freely smoke cannabis.
Besa Hospitality Group, out of Gladstone, Mo., announced on Wednesday, Nov. 9, that those who live in the KC Metro area and central Midwest will soon welcome a new entertainment district along the Missouri River. The concept will include:
- A state-of-the-art amphitheatre
- Two indoor entertainment venues with capacity levels that range from 500 to 2,000 people
- Festival grounds
- Food and beverage concepts
- Corporate event spaces
- Wedding sites
BHG indicated that the venues will feature local, regional and national shows and performances. Meanwhile, the amphitheater has been designed to be a major attraction for preeminent artists and entertainers.
BHG noted that the project is a joint vision with BesaMe Wellness, a medical marijuana dispensary company in Missouri. The multimillion-dollar project has also been appropriately named the Smokey River Entertainment District.
According to the group, Smokey River is located about 20 minutes away from downtown Kansas City in the Village of River Bend. The multi-use space will provide thousands of jobs and host entertainment’s biggest names in music, comedy and the arts featuring fantastic views and experiences.
Here’s the kicker, BHG said a unique feature of the project will allow legal cannabis consumption in a select few of the venues.
“We have an opportunity to showcase cannabis and the acceptance of cannabis in our everyday lives. We’re normalizing cannabis through hospitality,” says Joey Pintozzi, Vice President of Operations and Marketing. “This is an entertainment venue first and foremost. Cannabis just happens to be part of that experience. People will be free to legally consume in some of the venues and enjoy being themselves.”
On Tuesday, voters in the state decided to legalize recreational marijuana with a 53% majority.
“This is an incredible opportunity for ALL communities,” emphasized Jack Mitchell, CEO of the Besa Group of Companies. “More than amphitheater and entertainment venues, this facility will help us develop the region’s music, hospitality, cannabis and culture economies together.”
BHG indicated the project will be completed in two phases. The first, set to open in the spring of 2023, includes the festival grounds, food and beverage concepts and a 1,500-seat live music venue with options for corporate events of all sizes, weddings and more. The second, set to open in the spring of 2024, will include the Smokey River Amphitheatre which will feature a 14,000-person capacity for major shows.
The group noted that the amphitheater design will feature an elevated bowl to integrate fans and performers. It will also have clear sightlines, and two-level VIP sections to allow tailored experiences for guests. The state-of-the-art stage will create unforgettable experiences.