“Little House on the Prairie” star Melissa Gilbert and actor-director husband, Timothy Busfield, are moving from their Brighton home to the Big Apple, and an estate sale is set for July 27-28, said Allison Ruby, an owner of Poof! Estate Services in Ferndale.
The business is handling the estate sale, scheduled from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days at the couple’s 2,500-square-foot home, according to the company’s website.
Ruby said the couple planned to downsize from their Brighton home and move back to New York City into a place that is fully furnished. She did not know if the couple planned to own, lease or rent their New York City residence.
Ruby said she only knew “minimally” the items that would be available during the estate sale because she hasn’t had a chance to be in the Brighton home yet. But, she said Busfield loves movies and is a big collector of DVDs, so she expects a collection of DVDs.
Ruby said some of Gilbert’s designer clothing is expected to be available as well as handcrafted, original art pieces designed for Gilbert. Ruby said she expects to know in the next week or so who designed and painted the art pieces that will be available.
Ruby said the last time she met with the couple last week they were getting ready for a farewell party. She said she if they haven’t left for New York City, she expected them to do so shortly.
Neither actor could be immediately reached for comment Sunday.
An interview with the couple that aired Friday on WHMI-FM, a Howell radio station, indicated they are moving to New York City for work reasons, though Gilbert admitted about the move: “I’m kinda in semi-denial.”
The couple said their time in Michigan was a good place to start their marriage. Gilbert said they have been pretty much living in New York full-time since October.
She said in a podcast on the radio station’s website “we’re starting over. We’re starting from scratch.” Their place in New York City is already decorated, and Gilbert said they are taking their “very, very personal photos” with them.
Busfield said in the podcast that the sale is more of a “break-even for us.”
The sale listing on the Poof! Estate Service website states “you will find an entire main floor, an upper level, a basement and a garage filled to the brim with tons of great stuff! With everything in working order and in great condition you are bound to leave with something you love.”
The website states that a detailed list of items and photographs are coming soon and that shuttle services will be provided because of the long driveway.
Memorabilia from both of their careers are to be included in the estate sale, according to WHMI-FM.
In the radio station interview, Gilbert said the address would be announced on the estate service website around July 26. She said in the podcast that among the items for sale include electronics, a deep freezer, a generator and a “little bit” of “Little House” memorabilia, including sheet music for the show signed to her by the composer.
Gilbert played Laura Ingalls Wilder in the “Little House” series on television in the 1970s and ‘80s. Emmy-winner Busfield, who was born in Michigan, was a star on “thirtysomething” and “The West Wing.”
The couple moved to Livingston County in 2013.
In 2015, Gilbert announced her candidacy for a Michigan congressional seat, and her campaign said that she expected to pay off more than $470,000 in federal and state of California tax liens by 2024. She ran as a Democrat for the state’s 8th Congressional District, but ended the run because of health reasons.
According to WHMI.com, Gilbert was active in the community when she lived in Livingston County, helping to judge a fundraiser for the Howell Opera House and working with children involved with the Community Theatre of Howell.
“This has been the most incredible five years, just being here,” Gilbert told the radio station, according to a story on its website. “I was trying to describe what Michigan has meant to me and what being here has meant to me and the best way to describe it is to say it’s been my blanket. I’ve been safe and comfortable and happy and at peace and content and this has been the perfect place to have that.”
Busfield was artist in residence at Michigan State University’s College of Communication Arts and Sciences.
According to WHMI.com, both are looking forward to the release of a film, “Guest Artist,” which they produced with actor Jeff Daniels and which was shot in Chelsea.Contact Christina Hall: [email protected]
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