MARYSVILLE — The Village Restaurant, which was severely damaged by a fire Feb. 19, will reopen soon, but temporarily in another city, one of its managers said this week.
The restaurant is expected to reopen in the vacant Majestic Cafe, at 2929 Colby Ave. in downtown Everett, said Mitch Carson, who works as the entertainment manager for the Wild Hare, the music bar and cafe that was located inside the restaurant.
The Majestic closed in December 2014, and the building has been vacant ever since. It’s unclear when exactly the doors will open on the Village’s temporary home.
“There’s red tape; we have to apply for temporary permits to sell booze and whatnot,” he said. But it will give the restaurant’s many fans a place to go while the old Village is rebuilt.
The two-alarm fire struck around 3 a.m. Feb. 19 and gutted the restaurant. No one was injured in the blaze, and fire investigators believe it started about an hour after the last employee left for the night. The cause of the fire has not been determined.
The owners are waiting for an insurance estimate, but damage is likely to be well in excess of $1 million, said Carson, who was acting as a spokesman for the business.
“We’re probably looking at a year until we completely rebuild,” he said.
The restaurant dates back to 1937, when it was a pie shack on old Highway 99, now State Avenue. As a full-service restaurant, it specialized in home-style comfort dishes, including meatloaf and chicken fried steak.
“It was very famous for pies and Marysville was very famous at the time and previous to that for having one traffic light in town,” said Ken Cage, the president of the Marysville Historical Society.
“People going north for weekends and back, they always would stop and take a break and have a piece of pie,” he said.
According to the book “Reflections of Marysville: A Pictorial History,” published by the city of Marysville, the pies were identified with the city almost as much as strawberries were.
Original Village owners Hank and Trudie Mangis sold the restaurant in 1953 to Wayne and Maxine Cross, who carried on the pie tradition.
The restaurant also was featured at the 1962 World’s Fair in Seattle, which helped spread the word about its pies.
The construction of I-5 in the 1960s meant that more traffic was routed past downtown Marysville. A new restaurant was built in 1974 at 220 Ash Ave., close to one of the exits.
In the 1990s, then-owner Ray Thorsen opened the Village Inn and Suites hotel next door, according to his 2015 obituary in the Daily Herald. The hotel still stands, but is under separate ownership now.
Current owner Alicia Adamson bought the restaurant in 2010. Her sister, Christina Adamson, opened the Wild Hare bar in Everett in 2012, but when that land was sold, she moved it into the lounge area of the Village in May 2016, where it hosted live music and karaoke.
The fire put at least 20 hourly employees out of work, Carson said. A fundraiser to support the staff has been set up online at gofundme.com/3f7p2ig, and there are plans to hold a similar event March 2 at Fanny’s Restaurant at 505 Cedar Ave. in Marysville to help those employees.
Other area cafes have reached out to the staff with offers of work, at least temporarily, he said.
“A couple of us are talking about maybe driving for Uber for a little while,” Carson said.
He said that the owners have made clear they don’t want to lose any of the staff during the closure.
Chris Winters: 425-374-4165; email@example.com. Twitter: @Chris_At_Herald.