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Fire closes Chikin Coop - temporarily

By Judith Pannebaker BCC Editor

A popular restaurant and watering hole in Bandera suffered minimal damage after a fire was discovered in the early morning hours of Tuesday, Jan. 13.
According to Bandera Fire Marshal John Stith, at approximately 5 am, a passerby noticed smoke and flames coming from The Chikin Coop at 402 Main Street. A call was made to 9-1-1 and the Bandera Volunteer Fire Department - conveniently located just a block away - responded immediately.
Quick work by the firefighters, which eventually included departments from Pipe Creek, Tarpley and Lakeshore, is credited with containing the blaze to the kitchen portion of the wood building. Stith said that the flames, which were ignited in a corner of the kitchen, also activated the fire suppression system, helping to keep the fire from spreading rapidly.
"Firefighters immediately turned off the gas and power," Stith said, noting that several departments were called to the scene "because we didn't know how large the fire would be." Their actions, he said, prevented the main part of the building, which contains tables, a dance floor, performing space and bar, from being damaged.
Although the blaze is still under investigation, early reports indicated that a potential problem with the electrical system might have caused the fire, Stith said. "We had to close Main Street for an hour because of the fire hoses," he added.
Meanwhile, Suzanne Schauman, owner of the Chikin Coop, is taking the minor setback in stride. She anticipated the restaurant and bar would reopen for business on Thursday, Jan. 22. Chikin Coop hours are 11 am to midnight - or 2 am if warranted - from Tuesday though Sunday.