A businessman looking to invest more time in his traveling concession business is seeking a buyer for his rural, southwestern South Dakota town -- for the price of $400,000.
A businessman looking to invest more time in his traveling concession business is seeking a buyer for his rural, southwestern South Dakota town — for the price of $400,000.
Lance Benson is the sole owner of Swett, an unincorporated hamlet in Bennett County about two hours southeast of Rapid City. Benson — who bought the town in 1998, gave it to his ex-wife in their divorce and reclaimed it in 2012 — put the town on the market last week, according he told the Rapid City Journal (http://bit.ly/THGUQ7).
In the 1940s, the town had a population of 40 people, along with a post office, some houses and a grocery store. Over the years, ownership of the town concentrated to a single person until it wound up in Benson’s hands about 16 years ago. Now, what remains is a bar, workshop, three trailers and a house, where Benson and his current wife live.
Although the town is a shell of its former self, its bar still serves a hearty purpose. As the only watering hole in a 10-mile radius, the Swett Tavern is still the de facto gathering place for local cowboys and wheat growers.
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“This place is pretty much where the highway ends and the Wild West begins,” local patron Gerry Runnels told the newspaper.
Benson said if it doesn’t sell in a year, he’ll probably hold onto his small empire.
“I hate to get rid of it,” he said.
Information from: Rapid City Journal, http://www.rapidcityjournal.com