Monday, July 15th, 2013
By Margie Wuebker
Minster school auction held
No bids for building; desks, other small items sold
  MINSTER - Memorabilia was offered for sale Saturday at the former Hanover Street school building.
The Minster Local Schools Board of Education sponsored a garage sale to clear out desks, chairs, lockers, televisions and even a washer and dryer no longer needed.
School district employees previously had an opportunity to purchase items they wanted during an earlier in-house event. The two events brought in nearly $5,000.
Bud Winner of Minster came with his daughter, local school guidance councilor Kim Seaver, to look at desks and chairs.
"There are still a lot of memories in this building," he said. "I knew folks would come to take a last look around the place."
Greg and Lisa Meyer found some "treasures" - a model of the solar system and an armful of world globes.
"The solar system still contains Pluto even though it is no longer considered a planet," he said. "Globes like these are especially popular at auctions and flea markets."
Visitors received a price list upon arrival with costs of $1 for a kitchen pan or a desk chair to $50 for either a washer or dryer.
Boeke plans to contact an area organization that has expressed interest in remaining desks, chairs and other items for use in Third World schools.
She fielded numerous questions throughout the morning from people interested in purchasing a scoreboard donated for use in the gym by the Class of 1950.
"We plan to donate it to the Minster Historical Society as a means of preserving as much local history as possible," Boeke said.
  There were no takers when the 48,307-square-foot building went on the auction block at 1 p.m. Sunday.
Treasurer Laura Klosterman stood on the south steps with bullhorn in hand and announced $400,000 as the opening bid. No response came from the 10 people in attendance and the sale ended.
Klosterman said the $400,000 opening bid was determined after learning the Auglaize County auditor's office website lists the property value at $752,000.
Following the brief auction, some people in attendance inquired about the cost to maintain the empty building which stands on 1.04 acres of ground.
Klosterman said the district pays $32,300 for minimal utility services.
The brick school, which housed the high school and then elementary school, was closed prior to the 2011-2012 school year. All students are now at the elementary and junior high/high school building along Seventh Street.
Erected in 1931, it has undergone numerous changes. Eight classrooms were added to the existing 22 in 1951. Americans with Disabilities requirements led to the installation of an elevator and handicap accessible restrooms in 1995. The latest renovation occurred in 2003 when an office area was moved to the ground floor.
The Ohio Revised Code mandates an auction must be the first step in divesting ownership of a public building. The board can now accept bids from interested persons.
"Hopefully there is someone out there with a creative use for the building," Boeke said. "It has potential and is too good to tear down."
Anyone interested in purchasing the former school or needing additional information should contact Boeke at 419-628-3397.
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