rec·​re·​a·​tion·​al | \ ˌre-krē-ˈā-shnəl How to pronounce recreational (audio) , -shə-nᵊl\

Definition of recreational

1 : of, relating to, or characteristic of recreation a recreational area recreational activities
2 : of or relating to recreational drugs or their use a recreational drug user Colorado's burgeoning marijuana industry had struggled under its own astonishing success since legal recreational sales began Jan. 1.— David Migoya

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Other Words from recreational

recreationally adverb

Examples of recreational in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The Haro Strait booms with ships, ferries, recreational boats and whale-watch tours. The Seattle Times, "How our noise is hurting orcas’ search for salmon," 19 May 2019 Now that cannabis is legal in much of the U.S. (medical marijuana in 29 states and recreational cannabis in nine states, plus Washington D.C.), more people have had a chance to experience the plant in a whole new way. Meirav Devash, Allure, "Everything You Need to Know About CBD Oil in Beauty Products," 20 Apr. 2019 Six months after the country became the largest economy to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, retail sales have undershot expectations. Vipal Monga, WSJ, "Legal Pot Sales Are Off to Slow Start in Canada," 13 Apr. 2019 State regulators have awarded only a single recreational license, for Sira Naturals, a cultivation facility in Milford. Washington Post, "For cannabis legalization in New England, it’s a slow burn," 30 June 2018 The prospect of devoting 89 minutes to Larry Nassar, disgraced Olympics doctor and long-term guest of our federal penitentiary system, offers about as much appeal as a recreational gum-scraping. John Anderson, WSJ, "‘At the Heart of Gold: Inside the USA Gymnastics Scandal’ Review: Who Couldn’t Have Known?," 2 May 2019 Advertising That changed in July 2016, when the state began regulating the medical-marijuana market under the broader recreational market. The Yakima Herald-republic, The Seattle Times, "Uprooting cannabis: Officials stepping up enforcement of ban on recreational marijuana businesses," 13 Apr. 2019 The Council has implemented an interdisciplinary plan that includes: youth engagement, economic development, leadership resources and recreational activity. Teen Vogue, "The Turtle Mountain Youth Council is Helping Chippewa Teens Find Their Voices," 11 Mar. 2019 Wayzata is a roughly 3-square-mile city on the northeast shore of Lake Minnetonka, one of Minnesota’s most popular recreational lakes. Jessica Flint, WSJ, "Minnesota’s Wayzata Offers Hot and Cold Lakefront Luxury," 30 Jan. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'recreational.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of recreational

1656, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for recreational

recreation + -al entry 1

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Statistics for recreational

Last Updated

6 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for recreational

The first known use of recreational was in 1656

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More Definitions for recreational



English Language Learners Definition of recreational

: done for enjoyment
of a drug : used for pleasure instead of for medical purposes

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More from Merriam-Webster on recreational

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with recreational

Spanish Central: Translation of recreational

Nglish: Translation of recreational for Spanish Speakers

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