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Restaurant Rebuilds and Plans To Reopen

DELAWARE TOWNSHIP– Employees of a restaurant in Northumberland County that caught fire in February have started fixing up the place. The work is being done while the owners wait to see what happens with a lawsuit. They filed against the company that they believe is responsible for the fire.

Craig Lehman nails boards to the roof of Bradley’s Fern Park here in Delaware Township near Turbotville. The place burned down back in February.

Lehman co-owns the bar and restaurant. He says he has been keeping himself busy helping to rebuild it.

“We were upset at first, but you know it’s going to be bigger and better,” said Craig Lehman.

“You’re used to seeing something every day and you come in and it’s all burnt to hell,” said Matt Holmes from Hughesville.

The state police fire marshal ruled the fire an accident. The trooper said it started in a motor of a freezer in the kitchen.

Recently the restaurant filed a federal lawsuit against a company in Missouri that makes kitchen equipment. The restaurant owners say their insurance company also believes the fire started inside a faulty freezer.

“You could tell it was just a piece of equipment that we had just things happen.” said Holmes.

So, while he waits for the lawsuit, Lehman says he’s working to rebuild.

“Besides a few remaining walls most of the structure will be brand new. The owners say the fire gave them the chance to re-invent and rebuild Fern Park.

“It’s a blessing in disguise.” said Connie Holmes, a former employee.

“It’s going to be a lot better it’s going to be nicer,” said Matt Holmes.

Lehman says he’s getting a lot of help from his friends and employees to help rebuild.

“Yea, I used to be a cook here. Now, I’m just helping with the construction,” said Homes.

“Friends stop in they give us a hand and that’s how we are getting it done,” said Lehman.

The owners estimate the construction project will cost around 300-thousand dollars. The owners plan to have Bradley’s Fern Park open by October.


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