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Locals remember decades old bar 'Iron Hog Saloon' destroyed by flames in Port Washington

Posted at 11:15 PM, Feb 03, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-04 00:15:23-05

PORT WASHINGTON, Wisc. — Nearly 36 hours after firefighters were called to the Iron Hog Saloon in Port Washington, flames could still be seem coming from the piles of rubble on Thursday.

The Port Washington Fire Chief Mark Mitchell told TMJ4 News that his volunteer department, with the help of neighboring departments, put more than 200,000 gallons of water on the flames. But now the flames will have to burn themselves out.

 Iron Hog Saloon in Port Washington
Iron Hog Saloon in Port Washington

Above the bar was an apartment where Sabrina Gruber moved in last spring. The college student was at class when the fire started. Her two cats were saved, one is still at the veterinarian. However, she lost everything else in the fire.

“I have absolutely nothing. All I have is the clothes that I was wearing that day and my backpack with school supplies” said Gruber.

Her family has started a GoFundMe page to help her start over, and she says she’s thankful for the support.

“It’s kind of overwhelming how many people are reaching out, but I feel very supported,” she said.

Others have been stopping by the bar to take pictures of the flames that continued to burn. Many of them fondly remembered times at the local waiting hole.

For Dick Lallensack, it was one of his first stops when he returned home from Vietnam. He also shared family times inside the bar.

 Iron Hog Saloon in Port Washington
Iron Hog Saloon in Port Washington

“When my wife and I got married, my late wife and I got married in June 1973, we came out here and had lunch here with the bridal party” said Lallensack.

The fire chief says the flames started in the basement of the building and spread from there. He expects small spot fires to burn for some time.

TMJ4 News reached out to the owner of the Iron Hog Saloon, but didn’t hear back.

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