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Fire was second to affect Smithfield restaurant

Posted April 19, 2010

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— The fire that ripped through Holt Lake Bar-B-Que and Seafood on Sunday wasn't the first fire to affect the family-owned business.

The Barefoot family opened Holt Lake Bar-B-Que and Seafood 31 years ago.

In 1981, a fire burned the original restaurant to the ground, owner Donna Barefoot said.  After that, Holt Lake reopened in a new building, at 3506 U.S. Highway 301 South in Smithfield, 60 days later.

"Today, it'll take me 60 days to get a permit," owner Terry Barefoot said Monday.

Holt Lake Bar-B-Que and Seafood in Smithfield was severely damag Fire destroys Smithfield restaurant

The restaurant was not open when the fire started at about 6 p.m. Sunday. The fire was contained to the kitchen, Smithfield Fire Department Chief Patrick Harris said.

No injuries were reported

Investigators said they believe the fire started when some fluorescent lights shorted out. Further investigation is planned.

Terry Barefoot said he is concerned about the restaurant's 20 employees.  "The way the economy is right now, it's going to be hard for them to find a job," he said.

Gail Byrd has been a cook at Holt Lake for 17 years.

"Hopefully, when everything is back in order, I'm going to be back at work," Byrd said.

The Barefoots are insured and said they hope to get back to business soon.

"If there's anyway we can build back, we're going to build back," Terry Barefoot said.

"I don't think they're going to forget about us. Holt Lake's been on the map a while. It's just going to take some time," Donna Barefoot said.


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  • living the dream Apr 19, 2010

    Glad nobody was hurt (including the fireman).
    Sometimes insurance policies will cover employees lost wages for a given period of time. Sounds like that wasn't the case here. Hope their back in business very soon.

  • myside Apr 19, 2010

    I am so sad to hear about the fire. Not only do they have great BBQ they have some great people working for them. The lady who works at the drive through is one of the nices people I know. Hope to see them open again soon and the drive through lady's smiling face!!!