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Local couple buys old UB church

Local couple buys old UB church
Local couple buys old UB church
Eventual owners of the old First United Brethren Church building in downtown Corydon, Sandra Abreu and Scott Ginkins of Corydon, look at the pulpit area before an absolute auction Monday afternoon. The couple purchased the building and property for a total of $27,500. Photo by Alan Stewart (click for larger version)

Though there were several onlookers, only two bids were submitted for the old, vacant First United Brethren Church along South Capitol Avenue in downtown Corydon Monday afternoon.
The new owners are Sandra Abreu and Scott Ginkins, the married couple who own and run Colokial: Expressions of the World at 117 W. Walnut St., also in downtown Corydon. The former owners of the old UB building were Mark Partin and his wife, Martha Wiser-Partin, who purchased the property in 1996.
Auctioneer Elizabeth Monarch of Auction Solutions started the bidding at $100,000, but when there were no takers, she lowered the starting price to $75,000 at the absolute auction. She continued asking for $75,000 before Phil Robertson of Depauw said he would start at $20,000.
‘It’s not where we start, but where we finish,’ Monarch said, before trying to get a bid of $25,000. She pursued a second bid for five minutes before Ginkins offered $21,000, a bid Monarch wouldn’t accept, saying that she’d only go to $25,000.
After several more minutes, Ginkins submitted the eventual winning bid. Auction Solution workers talked to Robertson multiple times as Monarch continued to ask for $30,000. She gave a ‘going once’ and ‘going twice’ before declaring the property sold.
Including a buyer’s fee of 10 percent, the church and land sold for $27,500.
With ivy having almost totally consumed the exterior of the north wall of the church, a gaping hole in the ceiling at the rear of the building and an overall appearance of disrepair, everyone at the auction wanted to know the fate of the structure, which had become an eyesore since the last time it was used (as a storage facility for auto parts) many years ago.
‘I would rather bring it back to something useful instead of letting it fall in on itself, or tear it down and use it for parking. A parking lot doesn’t bring people to a beautiful town like Corydon. It’s the buildings and the history; that’s what makes downtown Corydon what it is,’ Ginkins said. ‘We figure it will probably take about a year or more to restore it. Once we get the right roofer, we think we can get it back on track.
‘The structure is sound. It’s not going to fall in. We know it’s going to take a lot of work, but I think, in the end, people will appreciate what’s been done. A restored building is so much better than a parking lot.’
Long-range, Ginkins said he would like to get the building completely restored, then move his business there.
Corydon’s United Brethren organized Nov. 12, 1903, under the Rev. W.W. Moore, and land for the church was purchased from Corydon Presbyterian Church for $1,000 in August 1905. The building was erected in 1912 under the pastorate of the Rev. L.J. Taylor. The property was valued at $15,400 in the 1920s.
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