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Fundraisers will help Atlanta residents stabilize buildings crushed by heavy winter snow

The Hub, damaged by heavy snows in the winter of 2017.
The Hub, damaged by heavy snows in the winter of 2017.

The Atlanta School in Atlanta is hosting an online fundraiser. All of the proceeds will go toward stabilizing two of the former Idaho mining town’s iconic buildings, the Atlanta Club and The Hub.

Pengilly’s Saloon will also host an Atlanta fundraiser on Tuesday, April 18.

The buildings suffered serious damage earlier this year when heavy snows caused their roofs to collapse. Elmore County has condemned both buildings. The fundraiser will help address immediate needs to shore up the buildings and prevent further damage, said Rachel Reichert of The Atlanta School.

The work, she said, “is going to be a massive effort.”

Long-term preservation and restoration plans for the buildings are still in the works.

The Atlanta Club, a former restaurant, bar, ice cream parlor and general store, was home to artist Kerry Moosman. Moosman, whose family has deep roots in the Atlanta area, has worked for close to two decades to restore the building, one of the largest in the town. As unofficial town historian, Moosman catalogued the town’s history and stored many documents and relics at the Atlanta Club. He has been able to salvage some of the items. Allen Ireland, founder of Boise music club Neurolux, had worked to preserve The Hub, a former diner, saloon and dance hall that became a community gathering space.

Reichert is co-founder (with Amy O’Brien) of The Atlanta School, a program offering art, preservation, writing and building workshops each year. The school will tailor its 2017 summer workshops to “repair, rebuild and document properties in need,” said Reichert. “People interested in getting their hands dirty will be able to learn preservation and help out.”

Coming to the aid of the damaged buildings “wasn’t even a question,” said Reichert.

“The spaces and people in need are fundamental to the town of Atlanta,” she said. “The spaces are essential to the town’s history, and the people are essential to continuing preservation efforts up there. Kerry and Allen are really committed to The Atlanta, yet need a lot of help to get the buildings back.”

The school founders always saw the town of Atlanta itself as a “great jumping-off point for future creative projects and a fabulous location to discuss preservation,” she added.

This summer will represent the fourth that The Atlanta School has offered workshops.

“We have established a community of people who share our passion for the town and appreciate the power of disconnecting and working by hand. We hope these workshops help make a difference in the ongoing effort to preserve Atlanta and its history, while offering much-needed space for artists, builders, historians, writers, and preservationists to find a voice,” Reichert said.

To learn more about the summer workshops, visit The Atlanta School website, theatlantaschool.org.

An article about the damage in Atlanta and Baker City near the Idaho/Oregon border appeared on the website for the National Trust for Historic Preservation earlier in March.

Make a donation to help stabilize the damaged buildings

Make a donation online through The Atlanta School at its website, theatlantaschool.org or send a check to The Atlanta School at P.O. Box 864, Boise, ID 83701 or email info@theatlantaschool.org for more information.

Pengilly’s Saloon will also host an Atlanta Historical Building Fundraiser, 7 to 11 p.m. on Tuesday, April 18, 513 W. Main St. in Boise. The band Winewood will play at 8 p.m.. $5 at the door. Raffles for prizes.

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