It’s a north Iowa staple that’s been a part of the Mason City landscape for years, but this morning, it went up in flames.
Crews responded to the call, made by the bowling alleys janitor, just after three this morning.
Officials say they were able to contain the fire before it could consume the entire building but the location of the bowling alley stirred up other concerns about putting the flames out safely.
Law enforcement shut down both lanes of Highway 65 for nearly four hours as they battled the flames and while Mason City Fire Department’s Fire Chief Bob Platts says that there was significant damage throughout the building, he doesn’t believe that it was a total loss.
“There’s extensive damage you know again you’ve got to be the building itself and the contents so I don’t know how that will split out as far as damage but the building I believe is stable,” Platts said.
Many people went to the bowling alley throughout the day to see the damage for themselves.
Gary Books was one patron who stopped by and said he was shocked by the amount of destruction.
“You just feel sorry for them you know,” Books said, “that isn’t much, but if there’s anything I could do to help, them I’d sure like to try.”
Those with the bowling alley posted on their website saying that they are closed until further notice but are thankful to their customers for all of their concern and prayers.
The snowy conditions fire crews dealt with this morning made the scene difficult to work with but Chief Platts says that they will continue to investigate the cause of the fire and plan to release more information as it becomes available.