Bemidji Fire Destroys Campus Building - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Update: Bemidji Fire Destroys Campus Building

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  Investigators are still trying to determine the cause of a fire that destroyed a building at the Oak Hills Christian College in Bemidji.

  No one was injured. But, the blaze gutted a kitchen and dining facility at a summer camp for kids, operated by the Oak HiIls Christian College. It served over 600 area kids every summer. It did not affect the school's main campus.

  Sherwood Johnson has volunteered here for the last five years.

Reporter: "Kind of tough to see it go?"

Sherwood Johnson, Camp Volunteer: "Oh, sad. It really is."

  School officials say the facility had been used Wednesday morning, but it was vacant when the fire was reported Wednesday afternoon.

  The fire apparently started in the kitchen area, gutting it and the adjoining storage area.

  The camp's director says the building was insured and they plan to have the facility up and running again by next summer.

Scott Buchan, Camp Director: "Yeah, we'll get this thing going as soon as we can and have camp up and running again next year."

Reporter: "Kind of an inconvenience?"

Buchan: "Yeah, we hope everything goes smooth."

  Buchan says it hasn't been determined yet whether the actual dining area will also have to be rebuilt. Insurance adjusters are still checking things out.

Scott Buchan: "People through the years from Bemidji have come to camp. You talk to a lot people and to a lot of people this building has a special place in their hearts."


Original Story

Investigators will return to an area bible college on Thursday to try and to figure out what caused a massive fire at the campground dining hall. It started Wednesday afternoon just before 3:30 at Oak Hills Bible College.

Staff saw smoke coming from the dining hall, and by the time crews arrived the fire had spread to a large portion of the building. It took more than 30 fire fighters to put out the blaze. The college says the kitchen in the main dining hall for students is okay, but the fire happened in the dining hall on the campus campgrounds, that building is destroyed.

No one was hurt and the fire departments were on scene approximately three hours. Crews say the fire appears to have been an accident but the cause is under investigation.

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