Firefighters say iconic Island Park building a ‘total loss’ after fire

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Courtesy Luis Manuel Pacheco

ISLAND PARK — An iconic building in Island Park caught fire Tuesday night and is likely a total loss.

Island Park Fire Chief Nathanael Brandemihl says they are unsure what caused the fire at the former Chalet restaurant in Last Chance, but think it may have been started because of soot build-up inside a wood stove or the chimney.

“We saved, I’d say, about two thirds of it,” Brandemihl said. “But probably more than likely we’ll consider it a total loss.”

The Chalet building is a former restaurant that was being used as a residence. There were no reported injuries and the individual who was living in the building was able to escape without injuries.

Firemen from Ashton and St. Anthony were called in to assist with the fire to contribute water and manpower. The nearest structure to the fire was a gas station with three above ground gas tanks. The gas station did cause some concern for the firefighters, but ultimately there wasn’t a problem.

“My biggest concern was the fire reaching those big gas tanks,” Brandemihl said. “The fire actually started at the furthest point away from the gas tanks obviously working its way towards it.”

The Chalet was located off U.S Highway 20.

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