Down a paved road not far from Beresford sits Peterson Farm, a property that has been in Gale Gors’s family for nearly 130 years.
Among the many buildings on the acreage are Gors’s home, the main farmhouse, and a small, renovated Airbnb called Kate’s Cottage.
The cottage had many different occupants from the time it was built, around 1940, to when it became vacant. And when Gors was a child, she says she and her siblings used to use the cottage as a playhouse, but it eventually became overstocked.
“From about 1960-2013, [the cottage] had collected tires and cans of grease and any number of things that farmers can’t part with but don’t have anywhere to put,” she said.
After Gors bought the acreage from her sister in 2010, she eventually decided to take a closer look at the little cottage that had been vacant since the late 1950s/early 1960s.
“I went over there with the intent of taking the woodwork off and maybe just taking the house down because it was in very, very poor condition,” she explained. “I got one piece of trim off the door, and it just kind of hit me that I should be restoring this rather than taking it apart.”
And that she did. With the help of a contractor and various others, Gors rewired the house, added plumbing, put in a septic tank, built a bathroom, restored the interior, and brought the porch back to its former glory.
“My grandfather bought the original 80 acres of our farm in 1891, and those 80 acres cost him $1,280 total. It was a good investment.”
“We restored the front porch as best we could from the pictures that we have. It looks a lot like it did when it was first built,” she exclaimed.
The cottage comfortably sleeps two with the queen-size bed, one bathroom, and a cozy living space with a kitchenette. But Gors says there’s still something missing.
“The only thing lacking is some of the gingerbread trim, and I’m still trying to find some of that to add to the porch to make it look more authentic,” she said.
After all of those renovations started in 2013, Gors’s first guest arrived in 2015.
“I’ve had people feel like they’re walking into a movie set because you feel like you’re walking into a different era,” said Gors.
Though Peterson Farm doesn’t operate as a livestock farm or harvest crops, there are a few animals remaining.
1 Dog: Flo, named after Progressive commercials.
3 Goats: Lovingly referred to as “The Boys.”
Cats: A handful wander the yard.
9 Chickens: “Perhaps the scariest of the bunch.”
The cottage has neither an internet connection nor a TV. Gors says it has become exactly what she had hoped it would be: an escape from the hustle and bustle of the busy world.
“It’s kind of an oasis,” she explained. “We specialize in peace and quiet. I get comments from people about what a relief it is to not be so wired.”
Peterson Farm is just far enough away from any city that the skies are an attraction of their own.
About Kate’s Cottage
Roughly $100 per Night
Enhanced Cleaning Protocols
Entire Home for Stay
Some of the last guests Gors had in the cottage came from New York City, and when she shut off the yard light, she says, they were captivated.
She smiled, saying, “People are just amazed by the stars and the Milky Way when there’s no light pollution.”
Guest experiences like that are some of Gors’s favorite parts of hosting the Airbnb.
Another way Gors tries to make guests feel special is by providing breakfast, when requested, at no cost and catering those meals to dietary restrictions.
“I had this couple from Chicago come stay here, and the gentleman asked me if I could arrange to have flowers at the cottage,” recalled Gors. “He ordered the flowers, and I picked them up and brought them back, and he proposed. I love doing things like that to make the people feel special.”