Brianna Ackley, owner of Wolfsong Wellness Boutique, straightens up a table of goods, Thursday, Oct. 17, 2019. (Ben Hohenstatt | Juneau Empire)

Brianna Ackley, owner of Wolfsong Wellness Boutique, straightens up a table of goods, Thursday, Oct. 17, 2019. (Ben Hohenstatt | Juneau Empire)

Crystal clear: First-time Juneau business owner enjoys her new adventure

Downtown business aims to be one-stop shop for wellness

Brianna Ackley was tired of clicking an online purchase button and hoping for the best.

The born-and-raised Juneauite wanted to spend time with a crystal, feel a yoga mat or smell a bath product before spending her money. Ackley said she realized she probably wasn’t alone, and that’s what encouraged her to take the plunge and start her business, Wolfsong Wellness Boutique, which has been operating downtown on the second floor of the Senate Building since mid-May.

“We have to order so many things online living up here that I just figured I couldn’t be the only one tired of not being able to experience something before bringing it into their home,” Ackley said in an interview at her business. “I just wanted a place for people who like crystals and things. You want to take home that one piece of quartz or something that resonates with you, not just any old piece.”

Brianna Ackley, owner of Wolfsong Wellness Boutique puts a crystal away on Thursday, Oct. 17, 2019. (Ben Hohenstatt | Juneau Empire)(Ben Hohenstatt | Juneau Empire)

Brianna Ackley, owner of Wolfsong Wellness Boutique puts a crystal away on Thursday, Oct. 17, 2019. (Ben Hohenstatt | Juneau Empire)(Ben Hohenstatt | Juneau Empire)

Plus, Ackley, who is certified to teach yoga but does not currently teach, had wanted to do something wellness-based for a while.

“Through yoga, I ended up learning about all the other things like aroma therapy and crystals and all of the other facets of wellness that kind of came to me through yoga,” Ackley said. “My favorite part has been connecting with people in a different way. The whole idea for the store is to be a sort of one-stop shop for well-being.”

Wolfsong’s wares include yoga supplies, muscle rollers, meditation cushions, skin care products, essential oils, candles, incense, crystals, books, necklaces, reusable produce bags and straws and more.

[Six facts to know about Alaska Day]

Ackley, who is a first-time business owner after working at the Hangar on the Wharf and Twisted Fish restaurants for about 13 years, said her first summer in business went well.

“I didn’t see a ton of tourist traffic, but locals have been great, which gives me hope for the winter time,” Ackley said. “It’s been really good.”

The store is currently operating under winter hours and is open Wednesday-Sunday. On Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays, the store is open 11:30 a.m.-6 p.m., on Thursdays it’s open 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m, and on Sundays noon-4 p.m.

Ackley said starting a business has definitely come with a learning curve.

“Learning about stock and inventory and making wholesale connections and things like that have been learning opportunities,” Ackley said, but she characterized the experience as positive in general.

She said initial paperwork wasn’t too burdensome — especially since she doesn’t yet have employees.

“Finding the space was the biggest thing,” Ackley said. “It was something I’d had in the back of my mind for a while, but then I went to get my haircut at the salon, and I noticed that this space was about to become available, so I just kind of jumped on it.”

[New play shines a spotlight on long-rumored Juneau history]

Ackley said she’d encourage anyone else thinking about opening a business to go for it.

“I got the inspiration from seeing other small businesses start up and succeed,” Ackley said. “I see so many people around my age (35) have been starting and are doing so well, and it’s like ‘Wow, they’re doing so well, and that seems like something I can do.’ It’s been super rewarding.”

That sort of openness to a new adventure is also connected to the store’s name.

“I sort of connected it with the idea of a mama wolf fostering and nurturing that wild spark inside of a baby wolf,” Ackley said. “I wanted to teach Juneau to foster that little wild spark inside of them.”

• Contact reporter Ben Hohenstatt at (907)523-2243 or Follow him on Twitter at @BenHohenstatt.

More in News

This photo shows the National Archives in the Sand Point neighborhood of Seattle that has about a million boxes of generally unique, original source documents and public records. In an announcement made Thursday, April 8, 2021, the Biden administration has halted the sale of the federal archives building in Seattle, following months of opposition from people across the Pacific Northwest and a lawsuit by the Washington Attorney General's Office. Among the records at the center are tribal, military, land, court, tax and census documents. (Alan Berner / The Seattle Times)
Biden halts sale of National Archives center in Seattle

Tribes and members of Congress pushed for the halt.

This photo shows Unangax̂ Gravesite at Funter Bay, the site where Aleut villagers forcibly relocated to the area during World War II are buried. A bill recently passed by the Alaska House of Representatives would make the area part of a neighboring state park. (Courtesy photo / Niko Sanguinetti, Juneau-Douglas City Museum) 
Bill to preserve Unangax̂ Gravesite passes House

Bill now heads to the state Senate.

After over 30 years at 3100 Channel Drive, the Juneau Empire offices are on the move. (Ben Hohenstatt /Juneau Empire File)
The Juneau Empire is on the move

Advertising and editorial staff are moving to Jordan Creek Center.

The state announced this week that studded tires will be allowed for longer than usual. In Southeast Alaska, studded tires will be allowed until May 1 instead of April 15. (Dana Zigmund / Juneau Empire)
State extends studded tire deadline

Prolonged wintry weather triggers the change.

COVID at a glance for Monday, April 12

The most recent state and local numbers.

Has it always been a police car. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire)
Police calls for Sunday, April 11, 2021

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

Gavel (Courtesy photo)
Court sides with Dunleavy in appointments dispute

The court, in a brief order, reversed a ruling by a superior court judge.

The Juneau Police Department are seeking Brenda Jay Gallant, 40, after she was indicted recently for her alleged role in a 2021 vehicle arson. (Courtesy photo / JPD)
Police seeking woman indicted for arson

The indictment for the August fire came this March.

Most Read