By Paul Struck, Editor
A Larrabee couple has purchased the building formerly housing the Cherokee Saddle Shop at 124 E. Main St. in downtown Cherokee, with plans to open a holistic health care facility there.
Mary and Dan Meloy recently purchased the former Saddle Shop building from Bob and Donna Leach of Cherokee, who have relocated their saddle business into their home in Cherokee.
The building also formerly housed the Cherokee Chronicle newspaper, which merged with the Daily Times to form the Chronicle Times newspaper in March of 2002.
Mary Meloy will operate the new health care business and the Meloys are in the process of totally renovating and restoring the building to its early 1900s vintage. They plan to open for business in early fall.
Meloy graduated from Penn State University with a degree in Health Education, and worked for two years towards her Masters Degree in Holistic Health Education and Nutrition from John F. Kennedy University in San Francisco, Calif.
She currently is working toward a license through Kansas State University to become a Registered Dietician.
Meloy's new business will be called "Body of Wisdom," with the focus on the holistic "body, mind, spirit" healing and preventative health care methods. She will specialize in weight management, stress and pain management, and movement and organizational classes.
"We will provide health and nutrition consulation to individuals who seek preventative and complimentary options to health care needs," explained Meloy.
Meloy will offer group and/or private one-on-one sessions, related workshops, and a service-oriented approach to provide clients with all the information available concerning their needs.
"I'm providing space (for health care services) that will be less clinical, more relaxed and informal, inviting, soothing, and fun," explained Meloy. "We will set goals and provide motivation to learn more about and to better appreciate our bodies."
A second business also will operate out of the Meloy facility, with Massage Therapist Emily Pierce of Larrabee opening "Reconnect." Pierce's focus is on helping achieve optimum wellness to reconnecting one's body, mind and spirit.
Pierce will offer Swedish massage, specializing in pregnancy massage, reflexology, accupressure, aroma therapy, and heated stone therapy.
"Reconnect" also will feature a special table that allows expectant mothers to lie on their stomachs for pregnancy massage.
A Cherokee native, Pierce attended the South Dakota School of Massage Therapy in Sioux Falls, S.D., studying and training under the tutelage of Robin Jensen, a 30-year massage practitioner.
"We're excited to open our businesses in downtown Cherokee and think we will be a great asset to the community," added Meloy, who, in years past, has taught weight management classes through the Adult Education Program in Cherokee.
"I've always been interested in food and nutrition and feel we (both businesses) will be a great compliment to our hospital, clinics, physicians and other area health care services."
The new East Main Street business lies in the heart of Cherokee's Cultural and Historic Downtown District.