BOSTON – It's big, beautiful and free, but a 217-acre former prep school campus in the northern hills of Massachusetts has also proved tough to give away.
Last year, an extensive effort to donate the Northfield campus by the billionaire family that owned it collapsed when the recipient unexpectedly backed out.
Its current owner, the National Christian Foundation, says it has narrowed its search to five potential recipients. It says the top two or three candidates could be announced within a month and definitely will be by Christmas.
The foundation has broadened the search by considering suitors that aren't exclusively Christian. That was a condition of the prior search.
Meanwhile, residents are ready to see new life at a campus that has been vacant for eight years.