History Auctioned Off, As Community Says Goodbye To Mr. Chicken
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. -- From the butcher's block to the auction block: Mr. Chicken is cleaning out his coop.
Bidders, cooped up themselves, came by the hundreds.
"I guess it's a pretty famous place," said Paul Miller.
It's type of place you'll find all sorts of hidden gems.
"I'm a bottom feeder, anything that goes cheap," said Richard McCarthy.
The restaurant, a staple in Watkins Glen for generations, shut down permanently in December. But it opened its doors Monday. It's the last time they'll ever be opened, in large part because well, the doors were sold.
Hundreds of items were for sale at the auction, ranging from pots and pans to larger items like refrigerators, ovens and sinks.
"We're looking for a mixer that they have downstairs, and a slicer that's in there, and possibly a fryer," said Miller.
In fact, the only thing not for sale at Monday's auction was the property itself, which is being taken over by Watkins Glen State Park across the street.
But the most sought-after item was the big neon sign -- the giant chicken that's been a fixture in downtown Watkins Glen for decades.
"I thought it would've gone for a lot more money," said Carl Meier.
Meier bought the sign for $950. He says he'll be displaying it in front of his organic chicken mill, so it'll likely stay in the community.
The only thing he hasn't figured out yet is how he'll get it down.
"I have no idea. Haven't gotten that far," he said. "It's professionally gonna get taken down so I don't break it, because I'm a wrecking ball."
As the hours passed and the place cleared, it became clear some people were really going to miss the local eatery.
"It's gonna be really sad to see it go. If any of the family wants to open another Mr. Chicken, we'd be glad to have it," said Lorraine Menio.
Watkins Glen State Park is expected to transform the property into an extra parking lot for people visiting the park.By Tina Yazdani
Updated Monday, March 27, 2017 at 09:47 PM EDT