'It's like a fairy tale'

The Lilley House is in place at the northwest corner of Exhange and Division streets, where it is slated to open as a bed and breakfast in the spring.

Tuesday night’s Victorian house move in Spring Lake turned into a festive community event.

On Wednesday, with the home in its new location at the northwest corner of Exchange and Division streets, owners Robert Lopez and Patrick Roggenbau said it feels like a fairytale.

Excavators will pour a basement, then set the home on its new foundation, facing Division Street, next to Isabel’s House, another historic home that is used as a counseling center.

“We passed by the house today and it felt like a fairy tale,” Lopez said Wednesday. “When you see it up close, it doesn’t seem like this is real. It’s too perfect – the town, the sentiment, the mood. Someone needs to pinch us already and wake us up.”

On Wednesday afternoon, workers filled in the hole on the north side of Savidge Street where the Lilley House used to reside. The two vacated lots where the home has stood since it was built by lumber baron Francis E. Lilley in 1876 will be sold to the developer who built Alden Place. He says he will construct homes to match the rest of the neighborhood.

Lopez and Roggenbau said they were shocked by the amount of people who showed up Tuesday night to watch the house make its slow trek down Savidge Street. The couple shook hands with spectators and introduced themselves as “the innkeepers.”

“We’ve met so many wonderful people here,” Lopez said. “There has been nothing but ‘thank yous’ and love for the project. One woman wants to book the bed and breakfast for her class reunion. She was the Class of 1946.”

During Tuesday’s move, Lopez and Roggenbau hosted a fundraiser/watch party at Fuel Bar & Refuge in Spring Lake. They raised more than $2,000 for the village’s Art in the Park project, which is hiring artists to create public art, such as building murals and sculptures along the Lakeside Trail bike path.

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