Saving a barn: An update

Two years ago I wrote about my aunt and uncle purchasing an iconic barn in southeast Idaho, and it’s high time for an update.

This barn is a local treasure, dating to the early 1930s and serving as one of the dwindling reminders that our part of the country was originally highly agrarian. Dean and Deanna Ockerman have several successful years of event planning under their belts, and they are turning this barn into an event center.

They have been working hard—see what I mean?

Adding a wall of windows makes it so much brighter inside.

Updating windows and keeping the right sizes. The roof is also new.

French doors at the north and south ends can be left open for breezes to blow through (and yes, they’ll be safe with railings).

Also outside they’ve created a grassy open space for receptions:

This old trough is becoming a rustic fountain with water spilling down that reclaimed-wood wall.

And the inside is still amazing, though the beams will be clad with boards soon:

The main level has been reframed with a kitchen, dressing rooms, bathrooms, and greeting spaces in mind. Everything will be ADA compliant.

One of my favorite things is that the family who originally owned the barn gifted Deanna with this horse, which used to be on the weathervane.

Dean and Deanna have named their place The Barn on 1st, and they plan to have it available for renting by October (follow along on Facebook for updates). I love when people run with these passion projects; I’ve got one underway myself, and the barn plays a role in that too. More details to come! •

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