People are used to going to Meijer department stores to shop for groceries, clothes, sporting goods and just about anything else. But soon, people will also be able to get guitar lessons from one particular Meijer store.
The Alpine Ave. Meijer in Grand Rapids, Michigan will feature the chain's first-ever in-house guitar instructor, Dean Wiers-Windemuller, who's been teaching players for years. "We are located inside the Meijer on Alpine up on the mezzanine," Dean told WZZM13, the outlet that broke this guitar news story. "We are the first music store to be in a Meijer, so we are thankful to be here."
Who's Idea was this?
At first glance, it might appear that this is another initiative by Meijer and other major department sores to take over everything. However, as Wiers-Windemuller explains, it was his better half who brought up the matter. "It was actually my wife's idea," explains Dean. "The idea was how great would it be to drop off your kids, do your shopping, and your kids get a guitar lesson."
Southtown looks to be a jack of all trades as far as what they teach. Dean will provide guitar lessons on acoustic, bass and electric guitars as well as the ukulele. Wiers-Windemuller hopes to teach that playing this instrument isn't just about plucking the strings, but also getting enjoyment out of the matter and looking inside one's self. "Three quarters of what I do is just try to pull the best out of my students," he says.
Will this become a Trend with Guitar Schools?
Do guitar teachers have to align with the Wal-Mart's and Meijer's of the world, or risk getting swallowed up by the instructors who do? Well, it's certainly strange that a guitar school is going into a famous department store, and this could be a trend that continues. But this shouldn't threaten the very existence of the large majority of schools and instructors out there.
After all, places like Meijer and Wal-Mart have branched out into a number of areas, including banking, computer repair, optometry, hair salons, restaurants and more. And yet these industries are still alive and well outside of department stores.
As for Southtown Guitar, it looks like they're merely taking advantage of a heavily trafficked store, rather than trying to start a trend. Will it pay off for them in the end? Who knows, but this is no doubt an interesting idea that's a first for those who teach guitar lessons.