Last Place on Earth auction night radiates nostalgia

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Visitors were offered wine, champagne and beer. Quirky goods such as store souvenirs, sex toys, bongs and signs were sold in the famous headshop.

“In 40 years, this is a first for me,” said auctioneer Mickey Greene. “I have at least 150 bongs and they’re like art, those things. Some of them cost as much as $ 500.

Mickey Greene of Sellers Auction gave opening remarks ahead of the Last Place on Earth auction on Saturday January 8, 2022 at Superior. Greene served as auctioneer. Dan Williamson / Duluth News Tribune

The headshop was closed in July 2013 for the illegal sale of psychotropic synthetic drugs. Its owner, Jim Carlson, is still serving a 17-year federal prison sentence.

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The products have been in an unpaid rental space for years. Now the current anonymous owner of the storage unit wanted to recoup the lost profits. The police directed them to the sellers’ auctions in Superior.

Mickey Greene, owner of Sellers Auction, said the first part of the auction was to sell “PG” items such as T-shirts and vinyl records. After an intermission, items rated “R” would be sold. Greene said it allows customers to leave if they are uncomfortable with these products.

They include hundreds of what Greene called “adult articles”.

Greene and his team of 12 worked nearly 40 hours on Friday to prepare for the Saturday auction. He said it’s impossible to know how many items there are, but if he had to guess, there are thousands.

Kalsie Vittorio, left, and Becky Scherf, second from left, took part in the sellers' auction and held up beer bongs for members of the public to bid on at the latest auction. up on Earth at the Sellers' auction in Superior on Saturday, January 8, 2022. Dan Williamson / Duluth News Tribune

Kalsie Vittorio, left, and Becky Scherf, second from left, took part in the sellers’ auction and held up beer bongs for members of the public to bid on at the latest auction. up on Earth at the Sellers’ auction in Superior on Saturday, January 8, 2022. Dan Williamson / Duluth News Tribune

Greene said the party commemorates the store’s reputation and unique courage, well known to it as a “funky” and “cool” boutique.

Incense, tobacco products, posters and cassettes by the hundreds also graced the auction tables, sparking the interest of any vintage lover.

Patrick Nelson, right, of Superior, looks down at the selection of vinyl records that were part of Last Place on Earth memorabilia and merchandise that could be auctioned off at the Sellers' auction at Superior on Saturday January 8, 2022. Dan Williamson / Duluth News Tribune

Patrick Nelson, right, of Superior, looks down at the selection of vinyl records that were part of Last Place on Earth memorabilia and merchandise that could be auctioned off at the Sellers’ auction at Superior on Saturday January 8, 2022. Dan Williamson / Duluth News Tribune

“It was kind of like Electric Fetus,” Greene said, “but older and funky.”

He said interested shoppers were excited about the items, despite the shop’s darker reputation it received before it closed.

“I think everyone is really emphasizing the positive,” Greene said. “People are just like – ‘it’s fun’.”

Where blue cups were raised dollars were spent by people like 23-year-old Jasmine Acosta from Superior, who has a taste for all things vintage.

“I’ve never been to ‘Last Place on Earth’ before, I was too young to go,” Acosta said. “But as soon as I heard about it, I mean, I’m totally vintage. ”

Members of the public await the start of the Last Place on Earth auction at the Superior Sellers' Auction on Saturday, January 8, 2022. Dan Williamson / Duluth News Tribune

Members of the public await the start of the Last Place on Earth auction at the Superior Sellers’ Auction on Saturday, January 8, 2022. Dan Williamson / Duluth News Tribune

Ashley Swenson, also of Superior, said she was also too young to enter “The Last Place on Earth” in its prime, but always wanted to peek inside the sadly. famous shop. On Saturday, Swenson was able to do just that – eight years later.

“There’s a lot of cool stuff here that I wish I could see in the store,” Swenson said. “I was only able to go back once while it was still open.”

Greene said the auction was the latest bookend on the infamy surrounding the legacy of “The Last Place on Earth” for the community of Northland.

This story was edited at 10:18 p.m. on January 8, 2022 to remove the apostrophe from the seller’s auction. It was originally posted at 8:24 p.m.

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