Published March 13, 2023

Bringing a Downtown Landmark Back to Life 

Written by
Kim Fundingsland
| The Dakotan
This building on Minot's Main Street will soon undergo a transformation. (Photo: Kim Fundingsland/The Dakotan)
This building on Minot's Main Street will soon undergo a transformation. (Photo: Kim Fundingsland/The Dakotan)

Old Masonic Temple on Main Street 

MINOT – A historic building on Main Street has changed ownership and planning is underway to restore the building so it will once again be a focal point in the middle of the city. 

Currently, the old Masonic Temple shows wear and tear and lacks the curb appeal of other Main Street businesses. However, Melinda Howe hopes to refurbish the building so it will once again become an appealing fixture on Main Street. Howe is the owner of Ascend Wellness, which “specializes in ketamine infusion therapy to relieve severe, treatment-resistant mental health conditions and chronic pain disorders.”  

Ascend Wellness is currently located at 2 South Main Street, but has begun to outgrow that facility. 

“I needed something bigger and that’s a pretty big building, with second, third, and fourth floors,” said Howe. “We are going to take over the main level once we get it back in shape. We’re hoping to be in by the middle of summer if we can get going.” 

The building has been deteriorating in appearance for several years. However, says Howe, the historic building will undergo a very favorable transformation. 

(Photo: Submitted)

“I was born and raised here and always thought that building was pretty on the outside. It’s a beautiful building that struck me because of the windows,” said Howe. “I never realized there was a Masonic Temple upstairs. It’s beautiful up there, a big dome in the ceiling and a spiral staircase.” 

Howe says some areas of the building are in “pretty poor shape right now” but that much of the building remains original. 

“All the doors are still there and the woodwork appears to be in beautiful shape,” remarked Howe. “It just needs to be cleaned up.” 

Additionally, said Howe, the façade of the building will be “modernized” and she’ll be bringing back some of the history of the structure. 

“The main floor once housed Unique Cash Grocery, so we’re going to rename part of our business as well,” explained Howe. “We’re going to try and put it back to the way it used to look. We’re pretty firm on that.” 

Unique Cash Grocery will occupy a small portion of the main floor, providing produce and other grocery needs, primarily for downtown residents. 

The basement of the building has housed an antique business for 25 years. That business will remain in place. Eventually, said Howe, plans will be made for the upper floors of the building. 

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