Antiques show to help fund repairs to New Bern's historic Union Station Depot

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NEW BERN, N.C. (WITN) - A big event this weekend in Eastern Carolina is benefiting one group's effort to restore a historic building that has sat largely untouched for nearly 50 years.

The Union Station Depot train station used to be the lifeline for residents in New Bern and was the primary form of transportation. It was built in 1910 and used until 1987 but has since fallen into disrepair.

The New Bern Preservation Foundation has spent years collecting the funds necessary to work on the first floor of the Union Station Depot.

In 2009, the group was able to fund a roof replacement project after it collapsed.

Very soon, work will begin to restore the entire first floor, which is expected to be complete in August 2018.

Once the work is done, the foundation hopes it will pave the way for several new businesses to set up shop.

"This is a very important part of New Bern's history and we are delighted, the timing is right, the funding is there, the interest is there to go ahead and bring this back to its role as a main part of the historic transportation role that New Bern has had," says Lee Purcell with the New Bern Preservation Foundation.

The next step for the group is to raise enough to begin work on the second floor of the train station.

Officials with the preservation foundation say they have already had several businesses say they were interested in the space once it is renovated.

This weekend's Antique's Show and Sale in New Bern, which is hosted by the Preservation Foundation, will benefit their efforts to fund more work on the train station.

The foundation estimates it will cost between $1.6 to $2 million to complete renovations of the Union Train Station.

At the event, more than 35 quality antique dealers will be on hand to sell items that are at least 50 years old. There will also be local music and food for attendees. Organizers say the show attracts dealers from as far away as New York and Florida.

The 32nd Annual New Bern Antiques Show and Sale runs from 10 a.m.- 5 p.m. on Saturday. Doors will be open from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. on Sunday.

Tickets are $8 in advance and $10 at the door. Tickets are good for all 3 days of the event.