Rennie Lodge, publish workplace destroyed in hearth

Rennie Lodge, publish workplace destroyed in hearth

An early morning hearth destroyed a landmark in a small southeast Manitoba group.

In response to RCMP, officers from the Whitemouth and Lac du Bonnet detachments have been referred to as to a hearth on the resort and publish workplace in Rennie, Man. round 3:50 a.m. Hearth crews from Whitemouth, Whiteshell and Reynolds additionally responded to the incident in the neighborhood situated about 130 kilometres east of Winnipeg on Freeway 44.

The reason for the hearth remains to be underneath investigation however the loss is already being felt by individuals within the space.

“It’s going to be robust for certain,” mentioned Ryan Kuz, the postmaster in Rennie and a earlier proprietor of the resort. “So many good reminiscences, a lot historical past on this constructing. So many individuals in all probability had their first drinks, in all probability a pair years too early. It’s going to be robust.”

Nobody was damage because the resort was empty however the hearth unfold quick, destroying the 83-year-old construction which was additionally dwelling to a restaurant and bar. It has been a fixture in the neighborhood simply exterior the doorway to Whiteshell Provincial Park.

Rennie Lodge, publish workplace destroyed in hearthThe Rennie Lodge went up in flames on Dec. 8, 2022. (Supply: Colleen Kuz Gresko)

Carlin Giesbrecht, the deputy chief of the Whitemouth Hearth Division, mentioned when crews arrived on the hearth, it was in its starting levels.

“The fellows made entry and knocked the hearth down a bit however sadly it had already unfold into inside partitions, attic areas,” he mentioned in an interview in Rennie.

“We have been lucky that we had the RM of Reynolds Hearth Division assist us, in addition to the Whiteshell (Hearth Division) out of West Hawk got here to assist us so we will rotate guys out of the climate, maintain them considerably heat.”

He mentioned crews have been additionally referred to as to a different hearth earlier on the Canadian Pacific (CP) railway tracks about 5 kilometres west of city.

In response to data from RCMP and CP, a mechanical difficulty brought about a hearth on a locomotive round 11:30 a.m. close to Rennie. Nobody was damage.

Hearth crews from Whitemouth responded, extinguished the hearth and went dwelling solely to be dispatched again to Rennie hours later for the hearth on the resort and publish workplace.  

The aftermath of a fireplace on the Rennie Lodge and publish workplace on Dec. 8, 2022 (Picture supply: Jamie Dowsett/CTV Information Winnipeg)

Kuz’s household purchased it in 1952 and owned the resort, which was in-built 1939, for round 30 years.

They bought it and purchased it again in 2002 earlier than promoting it once more simply over a yr in the past whereas Kuz continued working within the constructing because the postmaster.

“And we only recently bought in 2021, hoping for the brand new individuals to have success however this isn’t so nice,” Kuz mentioned.

The brand new house owners, who declined touch upon digicam, took over the resort in July 2021. They mentioned it had been closed for the previous two months since Sep. 30 as a consequence of staffing challenges. However they mentioned they deliberate to reopen subsequent week simply in time for the beginning of the snowmobile season.

Uma Bilimoria, who ran the resort along with her husband, and in addition owns the Rennie fuel station mentioned she’s shocked and it feels just like the land beneath their toes has been taken out.

“The final yr, the resort was so good. It was up and working. It was doing so good. The individuals have been very blissful,” she mentioned, including it was an leisure hub within the space.

“It is a actually large loss for the group.”

Russ Gawluk, reeve of the RM of Reynolds, mentioned when open, the resort was a well-liked place to cease for snowmobilers within the winter and park guests in the summertime.

“It’s an enormous loss,” Gawluk mentioned. “Over the many years it’s been a hub for individuals to get collectively both coming to or leaving the Whiteshell.”

Shannon Amos, who’s lived in Rennie for 15 years, mentioned shedding the resort leaves a gap in the neighborhood.

“Everyone gathered right here,” Amos mentioned. “The seller in the summertime time. Within the winter time, it was at all times busy, snowmobilers got here from throughout for wing nights and gatherings however that is devastating.”

Together with the resort, the publish workplace situated within the constructing was destroyed.

Weeks away from Christmas, Kuz, the postmaster, estimates up to a few dozen parcels together with as much as 60 letters have been misplaced within the hearth.

The publish workplace serves individuals dwelling in about 140 properties and cottages, he mentioned.

“They may discover out,” Kuz mentioned, talking in regards to the hearth. “I feel most of it was Christmas presents, a variety of Amazon packages after all however aside from that all the things appears to be common mail.”

Kuz mentioned it’s a troublesome time of yr to have a hearth at a publish workplace.

He mentioned anybody who misplaced any mail or parcels will have the ability to contact Canada Submit to make a declare. He mentioned a short lived publish workplace is being arrange in the neighborhood centre with plans to construct a brand new one sooner or later.

There’s no phrase but from the brand new house owners on what they plan to do in regards to the lack of their resort however individuals in the neighborhood hope one thing new can go up as a replacement.

The RCMP mentioned an investigation into the reason for the hearth is ongoing with help from the Workplace of the Hearth Commissioner.