It's more-than-just-annual surplus sale occurs on an as-needed basis, and brings dozens each time, eager for a good deal.
"Really I'm just interested in anything that interests me. I'll look around and think 'That's cool! I'll bid a couple bucks on that!" said Charles Beckler, a junior at NWMSU.
Beckler is a little tech-savvy, and is looking at old computer equipment.
"If I can get it for a good deal, then I'll get it and I often try to flip it or sell it on eBay or Craigslist or wherever I can get it."
Much of the old equipment has gone obsolete several years ago, and many here will repurpose their buys.
The auction is not designed to be a huge money-making venture for the university; rather, since their equipment is state property, it is not appropriate for the landfill like everyday trash.
"We save on landfill costs; it's a savings for Northwest because we don't put everything in the landfill," said Angie Wolter, one of the NWMSU staff members in charge of the surplus sale.
Leading the auction is James Johnston, a state-contracted auctioneer who commands the crowd into action.
"He knows how to handle the crowd; any auctioneer is that way," Wolter said.
The surplus sale is done in an auction style to generate a sense of urgency and a sense of competition that will get a good price on each item.
This will likely be the last surplus sale of 2012, but university officials say the next one is tentatively scheduled for the end of January, 2013.