Nearly two years after Denver decriminalized psilocybin, a mushroom shop has sprouted up a storefront in one of the Mile High City’s most popular neighborhoods, RiNo.
Lion’s Mane, owned by life partners Tatiana Chandee and Matt Swift, offers supplies, books, and support to all fungal fans, whether they be hobbyists, professionals, or advocates. Chandee and Swift opened the business in December 2019.
“Once decriminalization moved forward and we got our 50.5 percent yes, Matt and I were like, ‘Denver seems like they might be ready for this,’” Chandee told Westword. “We believe all mushrooms are magic.”
If you’re looking to purchase psilocybin spores, however, you’re not going to find them at Lion’s Mane, though they are legal to buy in Colorado.
Now, before you get too excited, remember this: While magic mushrooms are decriminalized in Denver, they’re still not legal, especially in the eyes of the federal government. In fact, throughout the store, there are multiple posted disclaimers, including one that states: “We do not offer cultivation advice due to legal & liability reasons. Thank you for your understanding.”
“We also want to stay within federal law,” Chandee said.
Lion’s Mane, named after a type of mushroom, will not sell materials to anyone looking to grow mushrooms outside of Denver or anyone in Denver County intending to grow mushrooms and sell them illegally.
This comes on the heels of Oregon decriminalizing all drugs during the November election. The goal of the decriminalization is to help residents seek treatment without barriers when they need — or choose — to. Removing the criminal aspect of drugs helps to remove the stigma from usage and — in turn — the stigma that comes with asking for help.
Whether or not Denver follows suit remains to be seen, but for now, we’ll take the magic mushroom shop and the psilocybin party. There’s no shame in our hallocenogenic game.