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Early-morning fire destroys Preston bowling alley

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The B & B Bowl & Restaurant in Preston is a total loss following a fire that was reported at 5:40 AM New Year's Day. The owner was in the building at the time and got out immediately, according to Preston Fire Department Assistant Chief Josh Ristau. No injuries were reported. The cause of the fire is under investigation. "It's priceless. This is the town's only diner," said Ristau of the devastation.
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PRESTON — Residents here are mourning the loss of a beloved hangout after the B&B Olympic Bowl and Restaurant was destroyed in a fire early on Friday morning.

"It's a total loss," said Preston Fire Department Assistant Chief Josh Ristau.

Surveying the smoldering remains, he added: "It's priceless. It's the town's only diner."

Several 911 calls reported a fire at the business at 5:42 a.m. Friday, according to a report from the Fillmore County Sheriff's Department. One of the calls came from co-owner Shelly Hanson, who was inside preparing the restaurant to open.

Sgt. Blaise Sass of the Preston Police Department and Fillmore County Deputy Logan Brand arrived first. They helped Hanson out of the smoke-filled building. The Preston ambulance crew checked out Hanson for possible smoke inhalation.

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The fire started in the kitchen and spread to an open attic area, which caused it to escalate very quickly, Ristau said. The building was soon engulfed.

Fire departments from Fountain, Harmony, Stewartville and Preston battled the fire throughout the morning. The cause of the blaze is under investigation.

B&B Bowl was certainly important to employee Amanda Nelson, who came to the site when she heard about the fire.

"It's my second home. I love that place," she said, as she watched firefighters work.

Paul and Shelly Hanson have owned the bowling alley and restaurant since 1990. Paul Hanson is the brother of late city council president Dennis Hanson. The business at 401 Kansas Street NW has long been a popular spot in Preston.

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