Eve and Brian Harker own Luna Datura’s Curious Gifts, 221 Seventh St., suite B, Rockford. The shop moved to Midtown earlier this month after operating at 117 S. Third St. since August 2017. The couple is pictured Friday, Oct. 13, 2023. (Photo by Kevin Haas/Rock River Current)
By Kevin Haas
Rock River Current
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ROCKFORD  — Luna Datura’s Curious Gifts, a local stopping point for anyone exploring their spirituality, has moved into a new home in the city’s historic Midtown District.

The shop has been a home for spiritual healing services and products since opening at 117 S. Third St. in August 2017. Luna Datura’s owners Eve and Brian Harker completed their move to Midtown, at 221 Seventh St., suite B, earlier this month. It’s open Tuesdays through Saturdays.

“We’ve always loved the Midtown area, but six years ago when we first opened there was a lot of work that needed to get done,” Eve said. “We were waiting for the time and investment and passion to be put into it, and we saw that growing. There’s been a lot of changes on Seventh Street and improvements, a lot of people are slowly starting to open businesses over here.”

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The storefront is located near the former Guler Appliance, which moved to 4435 E. State St., and next door to La Jefa’s Barbershop, which celebrates its grand opening later this week. Other nearby additions to Midtown in the past two years include Three Ravens Pottery, The Hub, Ernie’s Midtown Pub, Inscape Collective, City Stage Studios and La Michoacana Denisse.

“It’s obvious it’s growing at this point,” Brian said. “Let’s be a part of it and let’s help it if we can.”

Ronn Mooney, the executive director of the Midtown District, said he expects Luna Datura to be another good draw for the area.

“We’ve seen a definite increase in interest the last year, no doubt about it,” he said. “There’s a lot of property available and it’s reasonably priced. The key is drawing people to us.”

The shop’s healing services include reiki, chakra alignment, meditation and soundbath, and shamanic reiki. The Harkers view those services as part of a holistic approach to healing that can and should be used in conjunction with traditional health care.

“It’s another tool in the toolbox for healing, and people can find a lot of spiritual benefit from it with the peace and the calm that comes, sometimes the guidance, or the clarity they need if they’re in a stuck place,” Eve said.

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More people are embracing spirituality rather than religious affiliation, according to recent polling from the Public Religion Research Institute. Its latest survey shows 27% of Americans are religiously unaffiliated, up from 16% in 2006. That makes up a larger share of the population than any one faith group. It also accounts for 38% of those 18 to 29, the data shows.

“We’re a stopping point for people in their spiritual journeys no matter what the path is,” Eve said. “We welcome all belief systems. We don’t judge anybody for what their choices are and what they feel called to.

“We want to create a safe space for people to be able to be themselves without judgement.”

Brian Harker said they don’t tell people who come in what to think, but they are there to answer any questions the best they can.

“We’re a stopping point for people to check on the facts, to check the historical significance of certain things they hear,” he said. “Everyone’s growing in their own understanding, and I think we’re just here to help.”

A study conducted last year by the Springtide Research Institute found that 44% of young people ages 13-25 engage with crystals or herbs as a spiritual exercise.

“More and more young people are coming in,” Eve said. “When we started out a majority of our customers were women in their late 30s, 40s, on up. We’ve seen our group grow to both older and a lot younger and diversified.”

Luna Datura’s offers crystals, resins, incense, smudge sticks, candles, herbs, soaps, Tarot and Oracle decks, cleansing sprays, pendants and other accessories and decor.

The shop is also filled with local art, including some from the owners.

Both Brian and Eve were born and raised in the area and had their eye on Midtown for years. They said they saw the area start to blossom and decided to move from a one-way street where traffic to their store was limited into a Midtown building that had been vacant for a couple years.

“These are the areas that should be invested in,” Eve said. “These were the original shopping centers of this town when it was established. Come back to the heart.”

About | Luna Datura

Where: 221 Seventh St., suite B. Rockford

Hours: 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday

Opened: August 2017

On the web: ldscuriousgifts.com

On social: On Facebook HERE and @ldscuriousgifts on Instagram

Contact: 779-210-2964; Ldscuriousgifts@gmail.com

This article is by Kevin Haas. Email him at khaas@rockrivercurrent.com or follow him on X at @KevinMHaas or Instagram @thekevinhaas and Threads @thekevinhaas

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