Bethel’s Log Cabin to be demolished

The historic Log Cabin in City Sub at Pinky’s Park is slated for demolition, an ordinance authorizing its disposal was approved by the Bethel City Council. The then-interim City Manager Pete Williams introduced the item last December citing that the building was condemned due to its extensive operational damage, poor condition, and liability and public nuisance issues. Williams is now the current City Manager.

The Log Cabin was built prior to 1975 and has been relocated multiple times and has been used for a variety of purposes. Most recently the City had been renting the space out to small groups, for meetings and birthday parties, and clubs.

“Demolition of the structure will eliminate the public nuisance and harm to the surrounding neighborhood, would remove an operation liability to the City, and provide additional open space for Pinky’s Park,” says Ord. 20-42.

The City said the building requires uneconomical and costly repairs to a very old and inefficient building. The exterior logs are rotting and sections of wood are missing and grafitti and vandalism are a constant problem.

In the City’s municipal archived records, there was an authorization for the City to spend the necessary monies to construct a new log structure for the “Foster Child Care Center” at a total cost of $8,000 – $9,000 on July 18, 1966.

The first mention of the name “Log Cabin” in the archives was made on August 9th, 1979. Throughout its storied past, it has served as Adult education classroom facility, community meeting place, a headstart program, daycare center, teen center – as noted in the building’s historical record.

There is even an entry made on May 22, 1967 that “…Committee[?] decided the best use for Foster Care Home would be to move the current liquor store there,” according to the ordinance.

Bethel City Council held a public hearing during their January 12th, 2021 regular city council meeting. A couple council members expressed that they were sad to see it go; the motion was adopted and voting resulted in a unanimous yes, passing the ordinance.