By JESSICA WETZLER
Daily News-Record 7/18/20
Harrisonburg is welcoming a new business as Shenandoah Hemp Supply held its grand opening Friday at the Agora Downtown Market, celebrating its second store location within one year.
Shenandoah Hemp Supply, which started in Waynesboro, specializes in bringing locally grown hemp to consumers through a variety of products, including lotion, clothes and CBD oil items.
Owners Lee and Amber Magalis were able to commemorate the grand opening with the Harrisonburg- Rockingham Chamber of Commerce and City Councilman Chris Jones.
“We are excited to be in Harrisonburg and look forward to spreading awareness about hemp and its many benefits,” said Lee Magalis. “We look forward to servicing Harrisonburg.”
Lee and Amber Magalis started to make the move to Harrisonburg in early 2020, signing a lease agreement at Agora Downtown Market in March before the COVID-19 pandemic hit the area.
Amber Magalis said they wanted to open a second location in Harrisonburg for two reasons — Lee grew up in Harrisonburg and the couple wanted to reach more people with their products.
Then, the COVID-19 pandemic happened, and the difficulties of reaching people about their expansion began to surface.
“It’s hard to get the word out that we are a new business,” Amber Magalis said. “We
had to rely on online sales, and that’s still an obstacle.”
Another obstacle is marketing a product that people may not know about or understand — something Amber Magalis wants to change.
“Eighty percent of the store is Virginia grown or made and we want to break the stigma with CBD,” she said. “It is perfectly legal and helps with chronic pain, sleep deprivation and anxiety. Our main goal is to educate people.”
Many of the products offered include CBD, the non-psychoactive substance of the cannabis plant. All products sold at Shenandoah Hemp Supply contain less than 0.3% THC, the chemical compound in cannabis that produces a high.
Lee Magalis said he wanted people to know that Shenandoah Hemp Supply in Agora Downtown Market has a friendly environment and hopes people will feel welcomed and able to ask questions.
“It makes it easier for people to understand,” he said. “And we don’t just have CBD. We have crafts, hemp for pets and clothing.”
Andy Vanhook, board member of the Harrisonburg-Rockingham Chamber of Commerce, said it was exciting to have Shenandoah Hemp Supply come to Harrisonburg, adding that he was looking forward to seeing how the business will diversify the area.
“It’s always exciting when new business opens, especially during this time.… It makes it even more special,” he said.
Products will continue to be available online through Shenandoah Hemp Supply’s
website for those unable to visit the store in person.