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The downturn has relegated LaBarge from minor boomtown to once again a sleepy waypoint out in sagebrush country.

“Absolutely zilch,” local real estate agent Dennis Hacklin said of his business these days. “Some of the companies here are laying off people that’s been with them for years. The foreclosures are right and left.”

He grieved that the Moondance, which closed in March, was lost.

“That’s the only place we had to eat besides two convenience stores,” said Hacklin, a past mayor of LaBarge. “It’s really a shame it wasn’t able to stay going.”

Whoever buys the diner could move it elsewhere with a lot less trouble than it took to get it out of New York, Cheryl Pierce said.

“It’s raring to go. It’s ready. It’s ready to still be the Moondance,” she said. “It’s a better and improved Moondance _ as far as a building and that part of it _ than it’s ever been.”

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Mead Gruver can be followed at http://twitter.com/meadgruver