Shallotte fire hits Sugar Confections Bakery, optometry practice
One of the two businesses damaged in a Shallotte fire this week may be able to reopen soon.
The Shallotte Fire and Rescue Department, Shallotte Police Department and Brunswick County Emergency Services responded to a fire at Vision Square in Shallotte Monday morning, according to the Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office.
The optometry practice run by Dr. Chris Moshoures and his wife, Karen, and Sugar Confections Bakery were among the businesses that were affected by the fire.
The cause of the fire was still being investigated as of Tuesday, and there were no injuries, according to Shallotte Fire Chief Paul Dunwell.
Monique Holenko, owner of Sugar Confections Bakery, said the fire started on the optometry side, and her bakery was closed when the fire started.
Holenko and her husband, Alex, opened the bakery about 10 years ago and, every year, they close for a Christmas break.
Holenko said they usually open back up in the third week of January, but that timeline got delayed this year due to losing her mother-in-law to a battle with cancer.
“We remain in good spirits, even though this year hasn’t been ideal,” Holenko said. “There are bigger things that are more important than a structure. We have our family and friends, and structures can be replaced. We don’t want to put all of our eggs in one basket, from a baker’s perspective. We are hopeful and positive that we will get back on our feet soon enough.”
The Moshoures did not respond immediately for comment.
Dunwell said in a Facebook post Tuesday, “We wish to thank all of our public safety partners and the wonderful people and businesses of Shallotte who looked after all the firefighters during the Vision Square fire.”
Dunwell said in the post that the department is confident Sugar Confections Bakery could be up and running in “short order” since the business suffered minimal fire damage and no smoke damage. As for the optometry office, the rebuilding could take some time considering that part of the building suffered more damage.
“Unfortunately, Vision Square suffered extensive fire damage as it was rapidly engulfed in flames,” Dunwell said. “It is likely to take some time to complete the investigation, sort things out and begin rebuilding. We know that there will be grieving, planning and rebuilding to come.”
The Town of Shallotte thanked the fire departments at Ocean Isle Beach, Supply Volunteer, Horry County, Shallotte Point Volunteer, Civietown, Tri-Beach Volunteer, and Sunset Beach in addition to the local fire and police departments that provided aid in responding to the fire as well at the North Carolina State Highway Patrol and county emergency services.
“The Vision Square fire is a tremendous loss to the community as many of the firefighters battling the blazes are their patients,” Dunwell said. “While it is difficult to gauge wins and losses in the terms of the damages incurred, we know that within minutes utter devastation can occur and a life can be lost. Fortunately, there was no life lost and no injury incurred. While “stuff” can be replaced, it is difficult to go through the struggles associated with the rebuilding process. We know these temporary setbacks can result in a better and brighter future but it comes at the cost of stress and uncertainty.”
Reporter Krys Merryman can be reached at 910-343-2272 or [email protected]