SPRING VALLEY (AP) -- Ole's Cabin has a new name, and a new home in a new state.
For decades, the people of Osage, Iowa, called the empty building on the east edge of town Ole's Cabin, after its builder, Olaf Staff. The local handyman and builder fashioned the cabin out of old telephone poles beginning in 1975.
Now, the building is called the Log Lodge and it sits on a bluff overlooking the rolling, wooded hills of Good Earth Village, an Evangelical Lutheran Church of America Bible camp northeast of Spring Valley.
For years Ole's dream sat empty in Osage, and when Staff was killed in an auto accident, the land and building were sold to a farm-supply store chain. The asking price was $5,000 for anyone willing to move it.
An Elvis impersonator tried to buy it to move to Clear Lake, Iowa, and use it as a nightclub. That didn't work out, so Good Earth Village stepped in and bought the building, removed it log by log to storage and, when the money was raised from the 118 churches and donors of the Southeast Minnesota Synod, Ole's cabin was reborn with a new identity.
On Tuesday, Good Earth campers provided the music when the Log Lodge was dedicated by Bishop Harold Usgaard with psalms and song amid 400 supporters seated on the lawn around Ole's dream building. Two of Ole's three children were among those attending.
"To see what a wonderful thing it has become, he would have been proud," said his daughter, Linda Staff Smith of Cedar Falls, Iowa.
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