HAPPY DUO: Cheryl Hopkins and Thia Nendick enjoy their musical partnership
HAPPY DUO: Cheryl Hopkins and Thia Nendick enjoy their musical partnership Greg Bray

Speedi Cash exchanges space for musical groups lessons

RUNNING a busy store while a group of ukulele players strum merrily away in the background is music to one Gladstone manager's ears.

Thia Nendick, co-manager of the Speedi Cash store in Toolooa St has been hosting the Gladstone Ukulele Club (GUKES) for nearly four years.

"The GUKES come down every second Saturday to practice and play and they bring a really happy energy to the store," she said.

The unorthodox coupling began when customer Cheryl Hopkins bought a banjo-lele and Ms Nendick mentioned she'd like to learn to play the ukulele.

"Cheryl had been looking all over town for a venue to teach her ukulele students," she said.

The Speedi Cash managers agreed to give the GUKES some space at the rear of the shop to hold lessons.

This small arrangement lead to the store expanding their range of musical equipment supplies.

"For nearly 20 years we've stocked new and used instruments but when the two music stores in town left there was nowhere for parents to get reeds or strings for their children's instruments.

So I approached our directors with a plan to broaden our music area and they agreed," said Ms Nendick.

"We make sure we're competitive with the cheapest retailer in the country.

We will compete with an online price as well, if we can't match them, the difference is generally only one to two dollars."

As for the GUKES, Ms Nendick says they're always welcome.

"They play a lot of the oldies songs we all like and you find yourself humming along," she said.

It may be a strange partnership, but the two groups are definitely singing in harmony.