Pickin’ and grinnin’ in New Athens - Republic-Times | News

Pickin’ and grinnin’ in New Athens

By on October 3, 2018 at 3:08 pm

The Bluegrass Shack owner Chris Talley is the only employee at the New Athens store, selling and repairing instruments and teaching music lessons. (James “Tal” Moss photo)

The Bluegrass Shack opened in New Athens more than 15 years ago with mixed expectations.

“I never thought it would fail, and I don’t think anybody here ever thought it would succeed,” owner Chris Talley recalled with a laugh. 

But succeed it did, with the store offering a variety of services throughout its life.

Talley, who is the only employee at the store, got the building after bidding on it during an auction. 

She had been teaching music, which she does at The Bluegrass Shack, since she was 13. She was teaching out of her home at the time, so the building would serve as a new location for the lessons while also providing instrument repair and sales.  

Talley said she could not have opened the store without help from the community, which donated materials and labor to refurbish the building.

“We opened with the help of people from the community,” she said. “People from the community, even some I didn’t know, came and helped us with all of that.”

The store was a natural fit for Talley, who has been playing music since she was 5…>>>

Read the rest of the story in the October 3, 2018, issue of the Republic-Times.

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James Moss