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One Eyed Jack's auction hits $9.2 million

One Eyed Jack's auction hits $9.2 million

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STURGIS -- One Eyed Jack’s, a 45,000-square-foot saloon in downtown Sturgis, was sold Wednesday at auction for $9.2 million.

“That was the last dollar,” said Louis Bruer, who owns the No Name City campground, east of Sturgis on Interstate 90, of his final bid, made about 90 minutes into the auction

Peter Gold, the son of saloon founder Ray Gold, declined to comment after the bidding. One Eyed Jack’s opened in 1999. Ray Gold is approaching his 80s, according to auctioneer Martin Jurisch of Rapid City.

The auction attracted more spectators Wednesday than serious bidders to the saloon, at 1304 Main St. The auction attracted bids from as far away as Texas, Jurisch said. The bidding started at $3 million.

Bruer said he has no plans to make changes at the saloon.

“You don’t change something that works,” he said.

“This is the Taj Mahal of Sturgis,” Jurisch said at the auction. “There isn’t anyone in this room who could dispute that.”

The 45,000-square-foot-property included 80 cash registers, about 800 bar stools, a Sturgis liquor license and an exotic performer license that was grandfathered in after state statutes changed in 2008.

Sturgis police chief Jim Bush said there are seven exotic performer licenses in Sturgis, all held by Main Street businesses. The license will stay with the business, Bush said. But attorney Dale Hansen, who is handling the liquor license transfer, said he does not have the details on whether the exotic performer license can be transferred.

Transfer of the liquor license is a routine process but will require a background check on the new owner.

The deadline for closing the sale is Nov. 19.

Bruer and his brother, Matt, opened the No Name City Campground in 1998. The year-round, 4.5-acre campground has been listed for sale at $1.75 million since February.

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