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The Song Remains the Same: With national recognition, Lillian Werbin and Elderly Instruments aren’t about to change their tune

Elderly Instruments has long hit all the right notes for musicians in Greater Lansing.

As a long-time prominent presence in the mid-Michigan small-business scene, the Old Town Lansing musical instrument retail store and repair shop is getting some well-earned time in the national spotlight.

The second-generation, family-owned business — founded in East Lansing in 1972 and now located at 1100 N. Washington Ave. in Lansing — was chosen as America’s Top Small Business for 2023 by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce from more than 15,000 entries nationwide.

Chamber President and CEO Suzanne P. Clark called Elderly Instruments “a beacon of excellence in the music retail world and beloved on Old Town Lansing. … Their growth and continued success are built on a commitment to innovation, customer satisfaction and investing in their employees.”

Lillian talking with employees

While Elderly’s co-owner and CEO Lillian Werbin is honored by the recognition — which includes being named one of Michigan’s 50 Companies to Watch in 2024 by Michigan Celebrates Small Business, an entrepreneurial support group — it doesn’t change her shop’s ethos.

“We will focus on what we do best: creating strong customer connections and delivering the best experiences possible,” Werbin said. “Our drive to innovate is fueled by our passion to serve and preserve our unique musical heritage. It is important for us to remain true to our values and to continue to serve our community in the best way possible.”

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