BARABOO (WKOW) — An early morning fire left a Baraboo restaurant gutted as investigators work to determine the cause. According to the Baraboo Fire Department the call came in about 6:12 a.m. of a fire at the Barn Restaurant off of County Road DL.
Fire Chief Kevin Stieve said crews spent two and a half hours fighting the fire requiring help from multiple departments including Reedsburg, Lake Delton and Sauk City.
“Obviously, there was a heavy fireload and its an older building but they made a great stop,” he said.
At this point he said they don’t know the cost of the damage and they’re still assessing the extent. The roof has caved in parts, the interior is gutted and parts of the outside are crumbling. No injuries were reported.
Investigators have not determined a cause for the fire.
Saturday morning, the Barn Restaurant was the scene of a different investigation. The owner reported an overnight break-in. Investigators can’t say whether or not the fire is related to Saturday’s incident nor will they confirm whether or not this is an arson investigation.
A friend of the owner’s a neighbor to the restaurant, David Murphy said its difficult to see what’s left.
“It’s a real tragedy that after all the time and effort and money she put into it it came to this,” he said.
Murphy said he was a regular at the restaurant and not only was it a fun place for the community to gather but a passion project for its owner.
“She put all her heart and soul into this place and she’s an extremely hard worker,” he said. “Like I said before the perfect host.”
As the owner and the community wait for answers, Murphy said he wants her and her family to know they have plenty of support.
“If there’s anything we can do, you know where I live,” he said. “Give me a call.”
The Sauk County Sheriff’s Office is assisting in the fire investigation along with the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and the Wisconsin Division of Criminal Investigation.
Investigators ask anyone with information about the fire to call the Sauk County Sheriff’s Office at (608) 356-4895 or Sauk County Tipster line at 1-888-TIP-SAUK.
More on this story at WKOW 27 News