Tag: gardiner phoenix

Monkitree
Gardiner Phoenix
2015.08.01 00:52:12

fire photoIn the afternoon on June 16th as a was preparing for an artist talk with our current artist, Robert Saunders, I heard someone yelling outside. I closed my door over and then went out and saw a neighbor who was across the street. She looked at me and said, "Clare, it's bad." Indeed it was. We had a fully involved fire in a building just three buildings away. I walked through my building and looked out from the back and flames were shooting out of a rear window. The fire department arrived almost immediately. They began fighting the fire from both sides of the building. I locked up and posted we would need to reschedule the artist talk then stood out behind the building watching helplessly as the fire went across the roofline to the next building.

 

I watched as a new business desperately tried to get some things out before the fire extended its reach. There were still two buildings between mine and the fire. We live in our building and have our business in it. I couldn't think of where to begin if the fire kept moving. I had my dog, Bo and my phone and the belief that the eleven fire departments now fighting the fire would put it out before I really had to worry about that. I watched for almost four hours before I felt confident I could walk to a friends for a bite to eat. When I returned, the electricity was still off and we waited outside to see if we would need to help the Food Co-Op get their merchadise into a refrigerator truck. The power came back on then I decided I needed to speak to a fire fighter before I could go to sleep in my building. I found the chief and he assured me that they would have people on scene. Everything smelled of smoke but I had my bed and my belongings unlike the 12 people from the apartment building. And I had my business, unlike two other businesses on the street that would have a lot of work ahead of them to get back open.

 

Even while watching the fire I had artists and craftpeople get in touch with me asking if they could do anything or offering to donate pieces of work. The outpouring of support from the communinty of artists was nothing short of amazing. I had no idea that I would end up with over 110 pieces. The silent auction raised over $6,800. The money going to help the residents and businesses get back on their feet. We have a great community here. As our mayor likes to say, "A little city with a big heart." Too true.



Tags: gardiner maine | Robert Saunders | gardiner phoenix | gardiner fire

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