This tiny castle is free for anyone who can move it


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This itty-bitty kingdom is looking for a new lord to take it to fresh pastures. 

After deciding a renovation would be too much work, a Wichita, Kansas, couple is giving away a fortress-shaped prefab diner in their backyard. The bargain price? No cost at all — but the new owner has to come and move it, meaning the true cost is one of labor. 

“We don’t have the current capacity to maintain or fix up this crazy piece of history — but we’re looking for someone who wants to make this a project of a lifetime!” the married pair, Ada and Robert Sutherland, posted in a Facebook Marketplace listing, the Wichita Eagle reported. “It could be an amazing restaurant, backyard clubhouse/bar or just a crazy piece of history to own.”

The Sutherlands came into the portable structure after buying an old farm at auction in March 2018. After speaking extensively with the living family members of its previous owner, they found out that the funny, 20- by 20-foot-wide, 15-foot-tall castle in the back of their property was once a local burger joint. When its fate turned, the home’s last owner successfully relocated the twee metal building to his own yard, where he used it as a bar when hosting guests.

Although not confirmed, the Eagle reports the turreted eatery was likely built in the 1930s by the Ablah Hotel Supply company, its design inspired by White Castle — a Wichita-born brand. 

The building in the process of being moved to the Sutherlands’ backyard in the 1980s.
Courtesy of Robert and Ada Sutherland

The castle itself.
The castle itself.
Courtesy of Robert and Ada Sutherland

free kansas yard castle
The farm’s former owner used the space to entertain friends.
Courtesy of Robert and Ada Sutherland

free kansas yard castle
The building is in need of significant TLC.
Courtesy of Robert and Ada Sutherland

free kansas yard castle
Hamburgers were once flung here.
Courtesy of Robert and Ada Sutherland

The homeowners have been inundated in would-be takers since their most recent listing, which was picked up by the popular Instagram account Cheap Old Houses. (The Sutherlands previously put the diner on the market in 2019, but their giveaway efforts were thwarted by the pandemic.)

“We’ve received inquiries from nearly every state as well as one as far away as the Bahamas — everyone from restaurant and bar owners, preservationists, hobbyists, historians, artist co-ops, CEOs, HGTV stars, and everything you can imagine in between,” Ada told The Post. “The excitement people have is wild.” 

Ideally, they’d like the next owners to “carry on its legacy in a public space that brings joy to others, wherever that may be.” 

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