Don’t let the word “barn” fool you! Over the past ten years, the 1915 Barn has been thoughtfully transformed from a traditional, working dairy barn into a unique and beautiful lodging space that is alive with history, nostalgia & hospitality.
Dean and Kristi moved to their Johnson Road property in 1999. Along with their current home, the grounds boasted several original out buildings, assorted aging farm implements (“yard art” at the time), and a “cool old barn.” A year later, the new owners decided to spiff up the barn a bit by giving it a fresh coat of deep brown paint complete with bright white trim.
By 2003, time and water (along with several pesky marmots) had begun to take their toll on the barn. The roof was sagging and there was significant damage from animals burrowing around the base of the building. It was decision time: save the barn, or let it go? It was old. It had a cottonwood floor covering mounds of manure. The stairs (if you could call them that) were steep and shaky. It was full of pigeon poop. On the other hand, there was the history. There were interesting old artifacts. There was a poem written in pencil on the doorway. There was the hay loft and its enormous, breathtakingly beautiful ceiling. It was almost as if the sad old barn had decided its own fate. The entire structure was lifted and a concrete foundation was poured beneath it.
Over the next three years, Dean worked tirelessly to remove old flooring (along with what was under it), lay gravel, and preserve what he could from the barn. All the while, the wheels in his head turned: design a shop where he could restore the old cars he loved, convert the loft to a basketball court/gym for the kids, add a bathroom and maybe devise a small kitchen area. But first, stabilize the barn. It had begun to lean.
In 2007, after having secured and trued the structure years earlier, renovation began. Original plans included stubbing in electricity and plumbing to keep the future of the building versatile. By 2010, the barn had become a full-fledged five bedroom home where Dean, Kristi, and their kids lived for 14 months while their own house was being remodeled. In the past year, Dean and Kristi have been excited to put finishing touches on the barn in preparation for their new adventure: hosting a vacation home and small event venue. In retrospect, it seems The 1915 Barn almost took on a life of its own from the beginning. Now, the former “cool old barn” couldn’t be happier!