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Businesses Damaged In Fire Set To Reopen

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Businesses Damaged In Fire Set To Reopen

By Josh Egbert. CREATED Jan 13, 2014

Plattsmouth, NE- Businesses in Plattsmouth are picking up and moving on after a massive fire devastated a 150-year-old building in downtown. Flames and smoke damaged or destroyed several businesses. Three of which, are set to reopen.

Metal fencing remains in place in parts of downtown because of fears the old Plattsmouth Journal building could come toppling down. But that's not stopping people from coming down and shopping or eating at the local cafes.

For the businesses that were affected by the January 4th fire, they're ready to get back to normal and open for business. It's been a long 10 days for those business owners.

"A lot of smoke damage, we had about 4-thousand square feet that we used, so a lot of gift ware took on a lot of smoke, the smell, the aroma." said Russ Kathol, owner of Main Street Jewelers.

Kathol's business reopened Monday for the first time since the fire, which started in the Quart House Pub. The jewelry shop is now in a temporary location about half a block away. While most of their gift ware was damaged, all the jewelry was locked in a fire proof safe.

"The biggest process now is to make sure the jewelry is all, because it moved rather quickly, cleaned, shined up ready for the customers." said Kathol.

Make sure those businesses reopen are the members of the Plattsmouth community. They've been behind the businesses since the fire.

"We're all big cheerleaders for them to get back into business and keep the community rolling." said Patty Scarlett.

Cass Family Medicine will bring in a mobile unit this week and will start seeing patients Wednesday. Dr. Lee Larson, whose chiropractic center was a fixture on Main for 15 years, has appointments set for Wednesday as well.

"To be out of business for a week and a half doesn't sound like it's that important, but there's people that need care that haven't been able to get it, so it's been tough." said Dr. Lee.

Getting that care won't happen on Main though. Dr. Larsen is moving his practice to a different building he recently purchased.

"To lose a building that has that kind of history in main street, the size it is, it's a pretty substantial loss." said Dr. Lee.

But as the businesses get back to doing what they do best, questions about what happened that night still remain. The building was encased in ice. This weekend, it started to thaw, but it's still too dangerous to get into the building.

Until then, Russ and his staff will looking toward the future.

"You've got to look at it as 'okay, it happened, let's rebuild and move on'". Said Kathol.

Kathol hopes to reopen the jewelry shop in their original location in about six months.