HomeWorld NewsNew Rigby business caters to growing interest in harp music – East Idaho News
New Rigby business caters to growing interest in harp music – East Idaho News
September 6, 2023
RIGBY — An increasing number of harp players in eastern Idaho inspired Jill Weaver and Justine Turcotte to start a dream project.
The two harpists opened The Harp Store Tuesday at 465 Annis Highway in Rigby where Garden Gate Nursery used to be. The business offers harp lessons to groups and individuals. It also sells and rents harps to customers.
Multiple harps line the walls of the store. A larger harp is on display in the middle, including an electric harp and an amp.
Weaver tells EastIdahoNews.com the area has become a haven for harpists in the last five years. Many people who’ve always wanted to play but never had the chance are picking it up.
The women met years ago while playing in an Idaho-based harp ensemble called Nurture Harps. The idea for the store gained momentum in 2021 when the duo started working on a harp teaching curriculum for kids.
“I started looking into fulfilling a childhood dream of opening a harp store,” says Weaver. “About six months ago, Justine joined me on that journey.”
They chose Rigby as the location not only because it’s where they live, but also because they felt it was a good “in-between” spot for parents from Pocatello to St. Anthony.
“As a harp teacher, I’ve found that people are usually willing to come to Rigby,” Weaver says.
After Tuesday’s quiet opening, the duo says they don’t plan on having a grand opening. They want people to come in on their own and discover the store for themselves.
And they’re still trying to figure out their hours.
Individual and group lessons are geared to students between 8 and 11, but everyone is welcome to sign up.
Inventory is more affordable than one might expect, Weaver says. Renting a harp costs anywhere from $35 to $80 per month, depending on the instrument. They are hoping to offer a lease-to-own option as well.
Their longterm goal with the business is to make the instrument more accessible.
“There (are) a lot more options available than people realize. I think a lot of times people picture the really big pedal harps or the really tiny celtic harps, and they get that image stuck in their head,” Weaver says.
The women also want to offer space for recitals and showcase local artists on the walls.
For now, they’re just happy to be up and running and they want to be a “bright spot” in the community.
“We want to be able to serve the music community. We’re open to hearing what people need,” she says.
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