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Published November 21, 2013, 09:28 PM

Historic Rourke Art Gallery going up for auction

Moorhead, MN (WDAY TV) - A historic home that served as an art gallery for more than 50 years is going up for auction.

By: Becky Parker, WDAY

Moorhead, MN (WDAY TV) - A historic home that served as an art gallery for more than 50 years is going up for auction.

The Rourke Art Gallery on Fourth Street in Moorhead closed for the summer and will not re-open.

James O'Rourke opened the Rourke Art Gallery in 1961.

Now, to be clear, we are talking about the location at 523 4th Street S in Moorhead, which is separate from the Rourke Art Museum on Main Street, that will stay open.

The nearly 3-thousand square foot house was built in 1882 and still has much of the original woodwork.

Executive Director Tania Blanich says it was a tough, but a cost-effective decision.

Audiences at the Fourth Street location have dwindled over time, while growing at the Main street location.

That combined with the cost of keeping up a century-old building.

Tania Blanich/Rourke Executive Director: "Given the costs associated with mounting an exhibit and staffing it no longer made sense for us to continue doing that."

Kevin Pifer/Pifer’s Auction & Realty: "This is going to be a rare opportunity for the public to be able to buy a piece of property of this quality and of this historical significance."

Blanich says a recent addition to the Rourke Art Museum on Main Street will give them plenty of room to host all exhibits at that location.

The house goes up for auction December 17th.

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