GUTHRIE CENTER — An apartment fire in downtown Guthrie Center resulted in smoke, fire and water damage to three longtime businesses on Wednesday night, June 24.
The fire was reported at about 10 p.m., at apartments above the Strawberry Patch clothing shop, and Cabbage Rose restaurant. Initial reports said smoke had filled an apartment but the fire spread above the Strawberry Patch, shooting up out of the roof. Fire fighters had to battle the fire for about four hours, working on the businesses, apartment area and a garage to the north. The cause of the fire has not yet been determined.
Guthrie County Emergency Management Director Bob Kempf reported that seven people lived in the apartments, and all were able to escape unharmed.
“One of the occupants was at work, another resident was out walking his dog, and a woman and her kids were all able to get out okay. We contacted the Red Cross to get the families some assistance,” he said. Damage to the businesses varied.
The Strawberry Patch at 311 State Street sustained both fire and water damage. The retail shop had been in business since 1978 specializing in ladies clothing, accessories and more. A post on their Facebook page said the store would be closed until further notice due to the fire.
Dowd Drug, at 307 State Street, sustained extensive smoke damage, and officials there said that they were working to find a way to reopen for pharmacy customers.
Windows were blown out over the Cabbage Rose, which sustained smoke and water damage. The restaurant, at 313 State Street, had been in business since 1992.
The Guthrie Center Fire Department was assisted by Panora Fire and EMS, Stuart Fire Department, the Atlantic Fire Department, the Iowa State Patrol, Guthrie County Sheriff’s office and Adair and Guthrie County Emergency Management.
A local Casey’s store provided water, Gatorade, pizza and donuts to the responders.