FIREHOUSE AUCTION: Everything Must Go

Crews spent much of Thursday getting an old Des Moines fire station ready for a lot of buyers and curious onlookers. “As you can see, we are certainly full,” said Sande Matchinsky, owner of Auction Outlet of Des Moines. Matchinsky and her staff have been arranging thousands of items inside the firehouse at 900 Mulberry that the fire department didn’t need when firefighters moved to their new location. The location will be the new home to the Des Moines Social Club.

Matchinsky said, “This would have been an aluminum packpack they used…some old ropes and pullies.”

Old equipment, some of it really old, like a machine that made dog tag I.D.’s for the firefighters. Some of it, isn’t as old, like enough desks, chairs and cabinets to start your own Office Depot. There’s also a huge generator that looks like it could power a small town, along with rows of ladders that could reach new heights of envy in your neighborhood.

Matchinsky said people are already calling about what they have heard is here. There’s an old boat trailer someone wants to haul bicycles for RAGBRAI. Collectors have big ideas for much of the rest.

Zachary Mannheimer just happened to be here, giving tours and making plans for the Des Moines Social Clubs’s new theater, restaurant and more that will soon fill this place after the auction empties it out first. Did anything catch his eye? “Several things. I’m not talking on camera because there are things that we want to get.”

The firepoles will stay. Mannheimer has plans for them.

The auction begins at 9 a.m. Saturday. Doors open at 7 a.m., so people can check out the merchandise. You can also look at some of them on the Auction Zip website enter their I.D. number. It is 23159.

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