$40,000 needed to save old Fruitland school

The building could go into foreclosure.

FRUITLAND - A chapter of Fruitland history stands to be erased if the community doesn't help chip in.

The old schoolhouse on Third Street has served as a community center for the past 20 years, but was first a high school built back in 1928.

Owner Konnie Baines says the school will have to close its doors for good unless she can raise $40,000 by October first.

Hundreds of students have graduated from this old Fruitland high school and junior high.

But in 1997 the school board chose to relocate the school and students.

Baines bought the place, turned it into a community center, and rents out different spaces to tenants to pay the mortgage.

Last year, the city of Fruitland put a bond on the ballot to move city hall into the old school building. Baines' tenants, confident the measure would pass, moved out.

The bond ended up failing by 50 votes and ever since Baines has been struggling to pay the bills.

An alumni herself, Baines says she will do anything to keep the building from going into foreclosure before October first.

“I think this is the perfect building to see when you enter Fruitland because it sets a tone," said Baines. "It's not metal, it doesn't look like storage, it has some character, so I will go out on the street with a tin cup to raise money to save it, if I have to.”

So far only $17,000 has been raised and Baines says she needs $40,000 more.

She added an anonymous benefactor will match every donation dollar for dollar.

© 2017 KTVB-TV


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