Renovations coming to the old 'Dakota Beer' building
The City of Bismarck is filled with historical gems, like the old Dakota Malting and Brewing Company building. The new owner wants to remodel the space into something that will continue to make history.
The Dakota Malting and Brewing Company was the first brewery to operate in North Dakota since the repeal of the prohibition.
The brewery was built and opened in 1961 by brewmaster Frank Bauer.
Fast forward to today. Rolf Eggers recently purchased the building and is looking to transform it into something that will benefit the city.
From then to now, the "Dakota Beer" building stands to exemplify the character of the people in the state.
"It's that idea of, 'we've got the product. We have the knowledge. We can do it ourselves.' That's the spirit of North Dakota," said Mark Halvorson, curative collections director of the State Historical Society of North Dakota.
Bauer and his team launched the brewery. However, lacking quality controls and budget issues caused the company to fail shortly after it's promising start.
Dakota Mortgage Company stepped in to replace Bauer. While they improved the business, Bismarck Beer met it's end in 1965.
However, the business lives on through its products today.
"It's a physical reminder of what we had and where we came from and that applies to all antiques. It links us to our history," said owner of Bismarck Antique Mall Ann Farrell.
Farrel says her Dakota Beer collectibles sell quickly. She says it's the significance of what the building was that makes these pieces special.
"It gives flavor to our being-- to our time here," she said.
The current owner of the building, Eggers, has plans to keep the integrity of the building while adding a modern touch.
"The main style feature of that building is the awning and, you know, if we take that off, it's just another big building. The awning keeps that '60s flair," said Eggers.
Eggers plans to renovate the spot for future tenants to transform it into something Bismarck residents can enjoy years from now.
"It embodies that spirit of 'Welcome to North Dakota. We're progressive. We can do anything,'" Halvorson said.
Eggers will begin his revamp of the building in the summer of 2021.
Eggers says he doesn't know what the space on the corner of 26th Street & Main Avenue will become and is looking for tenants to bring him ideas.
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