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Posted on Thu, Apr 19, 2012 : 2:49 p.m.

Wild Side Smoke Shop plans to open in downtown Ann Arbor next week

By Lizzy Alfs


Wild Side Smoke Shop plans to open next week in downtown Ann Arbor.

Melanie Maxwell |

Editor's note: This story has been updated to change Wild Side's potential opening date to April 23.

Wild Side Smoke Shop — the tenant taking over the former Sole Sisters space on East Liberty Street in downtown Ann Arbor — plans to open on April 23 after a month of renovations.

The smoke shop, which has dozens of locations throughout Michigan including one on Plymouth Road in Ann Arbor, carries items such as hand-blown glass tobacco accessories, hookah products, cigarette rolling papers and lighters.

The 1,300-square-foot space was only on the market for about 30 days after Sole Sisters closed at the end of January.

The windows of the smoke shop are currently covered in plastic and the window reads: “Wild Side Smoke Shop Grand Opening 4/23.”

The owner of the shop could not be reached for comment, but building owner Michael Yi said he chose Wild Side as a tenant because the owner was “eager and ready to go.”

He added: “We talked to the landlord of their other [Ann Arbor] location and they told me [Wild Side] is a very good tenant. Also, the fact that they have many outlets throughout the state persuaded me to go with them.”

Wild Side joins another nearby smoke shop, Bongz & Thongz, which is located a few storefronts down at 119 E. Liberty St. Other downtown Ann Arbor smoke shops include Stairway to Heaven on South State Street, 42 Degrees on East William Street and Foggy Bottom Bayou on South State Street.

Lizzy Alfs is a business reporter for Reach her at 734-623-2584 or email her at Follow her on Twitter at



Mon, Apr 23, 2012 : 1:39 a.m.

Bongs and Thongs and this place, less than a 100 ft apart?? Did we really need this?

Robert Granville

Fri, Apr 20, 2012 : 1:41 p.m.

As a patron of Ann Arbor smokeshops, I want this business to fail and disappear. Wild Side sells almost exclusively imported, low quality items for a steep price. Don't let them fool you into thinking they sell American products or that you're getting a stellar deal. They don't and you won't. There are already shops in Ann Arbor selling American and Ann Arbor-made glass. We don't need another that undercuts those with inferior products.


Sat, Apr 21, 2012 : 1:14 a.m.

Luckily I buy all my pipes perfectly lucid. No sense getting all toasty and getting some cheap Canadian glass by mistake.

West of Main

Fri, Apr 20, 2012 : 3:59 p.m.

Too bad. I was hoping this place would provide some competition for 42 Degrees.

Karen Hart

Fri, Apr 20, 2012 : 11:46 a.m.

What a waste of valuable retail space. Hope it doesn't last.


Fri, Apr 20, 2012 : 1:47 a.m.

We love to get high in AA! WHHOOO YEAH!


Thu, Apr 19, 2012 : 9:22 p.m.

Great, now we have five head shops in total in downtown Ann Arbor. I ask, what's the point of having so many in the small downtown area of Ann Arbor? I guess variety is nice, and it attracts people. I guess it kind of matches with our marijuana friendly attitude and medical marijuana laws.


Thu, Apr 19, 2012 : 7:58 p.m.

I wonder if they will carry cigars? I like the ones that President Clinton smoked while in the White House.

West of Main

Thu, Apr 19, 2012 : 7:24 p.m.

I wonder if this place will carry high end glass like 42 Degrees, or if it's just another trashy head shop selling cheap acrylic tubes and prodo glass. Judging by the RooR signage, they seem to lean toward the former. If so, I'm very excited to check it out!

Robert Granville

Fri, Apr 20, 2012 : 1:43 p.m.

Last time I was in Wild Side had only low end import glass and fake roors... like the majority of headshops nationwide.

Angry Moderate

Thu, Apr 19, 2012 : 11:24 p.m.

The Plymouth Road store has higher end glass, but it's overpriced and the employees aren't as knowledgeable as 42 and Stairway.


Thu, Apr 19, 2012 : 7:13 p.m.

trashy trashy trashy

Woman in Ypsilanti

Thu, Apr 19, 2012 : 9:01 p.m.

Ann Arbor needs more trashy stores or in PC terms, Ann Arbor could stand a little more socio-economic diversity.


Thu, Apr 19, 2012 : 7:06 p.m.