Hello! I just wanted to take a moment to tell you about Olson’s Martial Arts Academy here in the Tri-Cities! We are a family owned and operated small business established here in Johnson City, TN in 1997, some 23 years ago. Glenn and I were in our twenties then with two small children, Keith and Katie, and got a loan for $1,500 to start our business. We used that money to put down the first and last months lease payment on a 1,500 square foot facility, bartered for a sign to put out front and used a lot of elbow grease to get up and going! It was our dream and passion to teach martial arts. We had worked for my father, taught for another martial arts school owner, and it was time to go out on our own.
After just 2 years in business, we had 150 active students, moved to a 3,000 square foot facility and bought a home. We still live in that same home and both our children are grown, married, have homes of their own and work full time at Olson’s Martial Arts Academy. We currently have over 400 students and have the privilege of going to work every day in our brand new 12,000 square foot facility in downtown Johnson City.
When we moved here, the population of Johnson City was around 55,000 people and now it is over 65,000. One of the reasons we chose to move here from Florida was because we knew, through information we had gathered by writing to different chambers of commerce, that this was a growing and prosperous community that still had a small-town feel. That was exactly the kind of place we were looking for to raise our family and start our business. It has proved to be a very good decision and I can say without a doubt we have enjoyed living here, meeting the people, delving into a wonderful community and building a wonderful life.
We have had the privilege of working with local people for our banking, commercial needs, marketing, supplies, services and much more. I like working with local businesses, because as an owner, I know how important people’s businesses are in order for them to provide for their families and build a future of their own. Every connection counts, and when speaking with someone it’s nice to have a local company to refer them to because you know they will get quality service and help a local family.
On a more personal family note, my kids loved growing up here. In just minutes you can be taking a hike to a waterfall, explore how early settlers lived, take a walk along a trail and have meaningful conversations while looking at wildflowers. You can go to a sporting event at ETSU or one of our local schools. Support student athletes and make new friends. It’s a wonderful community of people who are all working to live their best lives, working and raising their families.
I have never regretted the choice to move here, and I know this is where I will be with my future grandchildren. I envision them experiencing so many of the wonderful things my own children experienced growing up here. I have a wonderful history here to look back on and a hopeful future to look forward too, in Johnson City, TN.
Hoping you love the area as much as we do,
Glenn and Amanda Olson
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113 Cherry St. #10
Johnson City, TN 37604