‘King of trash’ taking on buildings in Dalton | The Fergus Falls Daily Journal


Darla Ellingson/Daily Journal Greg Peterson has refurbished the Dalton Opera House and is working on three more buildings on Summit street in Dalton.

“I’ve been in trash all my life,” said Peterson with a smile.

Peterson’s dad owned a garbage service in the cities, and that’s where his interest in ‘picking’ treasures grew. After moving to Fergus Falls, Peterson’s collections continued to accumulate while owning the Chopping Block antique store, the Cabinet Connection, and Big Red Boxes which handled mostly construction debris.

He also worked at the OTC Sherrif’s Department and Valley Lake Treatment Center for many years.

Peterson has done most of the structural and cosmetic work himself on the building he has named “The Dalton Opera House.” Originally a multi-use town hall, he picked up the 1902 building for a song.

“I’ll buy anything that’s cheap,” said Peterson, while explaining that he has been working on the Opera House, the adjacent creamery building and two other buildings to the rear of the property in his spare time- with recycled materials of course.

“I just hate to throw anything usable away,” said Peterson.

With humor he tells a story of Jesus being the first recycler.

“You know the story from the bible of the miracle of the five loaves and five fishes, where Jesus is able to feed 5,000 people?” Peterson asks. “Jesus says gather the pieces that are left over. Let nothing be wasted.”

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