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Fire damages, closes Serendipity
Salon and Day Spa plans Aug. 3 reopening after 12-year-old sets blaze
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Fennimore Fire Chief Dan Digman examines the remains of a fire at Serendipity Salon and Day Spa on Friday evening, July 17. The fire was intentionally set by a 12-year-old. - photo by Robert Callahan photo

A fire that damaged Serendipity Salon and Day Spa in Fennimore on Friday evening was the result of arson.

The Fennimore Police Department responded to a report of a fire behind 1155 Lincoln Avenue shortly after 7 p.m. on Friday evening, July 17.

As a police officer arrived at the scene, a motorist reported following a juvenile who allegedly ran from the area of the fire.

Grant County Sheriff’s Office deputies later located the 12-year-old Fennimore youth based on the motorist’s description and last known location of the juvenile.

Meanwhile, the Fennimore Fire Department responded to Serendipity Salon and Day Spa and extinguished the blaze, which destroyed a storage cabinet and a portion of the building’s roof.

Fennimore’s Mindy and Brad Johnson, partners of N&R Management with Mindy’s parents, Nancy and Roger Krantz of Lancaster, own the property at 1155 Lincoln Avenue, which houses Serendipity Salon and Day Spa and two apartments.

Mindy surveyed the damage with her husband and parents on Saturday.

“It has been an eye-opener for me,” she said. “The fire wasn’t that big, but the damage it has caused is going to be thousands and thousands of dollars because of the smoke.”

Tri-State Restoration of New Glarus has assessed the property damage as well.

“It is looking like we are going to have to address all the exterior repairs, which is the brick wall, the roof, the stairs, gas meters and electrical,” Mindy said. “I can tell you 100 percent all those things are going to have to be fixed.”

While the extent of the repairs needed in the interior of Serendipity Salon and Spa was unknown on Monday, repairs are expected.

“They will have to do some repair on the ceiling, including insulation and drywall, from water damage and smoke damage,” Mindy said. “They are going to have to take out the whole drop ceiling and replace it. Because of what the drop ceiling tiles are made of, it absorbs the smoke like crazy.”

All the Salon’s walls will need to be repainted to eliminate the odor of smoke.

“They will have to clean the entire inside of that building top to bottom and every thing in it with special products,” Mindy said. “Then wash the curtains, towels, bed sheets and all that.”

The upstairs apartments will need to be repainted as well, Mindy said.

Mindy hopes what work that may need to be completed by subcontractors can be done so by local contractors.

Although the work ahead is plentiful, Mindy is hopeful Serendipity Salon and Spa will reopen on Monday, Aug. 3.

During an investigation of the incident, the 12-year-old juvenile allegedly admitted to authorities they started the fire.
Fennimore Police Chief Christopher French said Monday that generally, juveniles who are alleged to have committed an act which would be a crime if they were an adult are referred to the Juvenile Intake Worker at the Grant County Department of Social Services.

Ironically, Mindy and Brad hosted Nancy and Roger last Friday night to discuss the needs of each of their properties.

“Every time I hear that siren I think, “Darn, something bad has happened,’” Brad said at the scene of the fire Friday night. “And it did.”