Highland plaza fire damages pizzeria and bakery

2013-07-10T20:06:00Z 2013-07-10T23:25:06Z Highland plaza fire damages pizzeria and bakeryElvia Malagon elvia.malagon@nwi.com, (219) 933-3246 nwitimes.com

HIGHLAND | A fire Wednesday afternoon damaged two businesses at Brumm's Plaza in the 2500 block of 45th Street.

Highland Fire Chief Bill Timmer said the blaze was along the wall separating Arrenello's Pizza and Butterfingers, a dessert shop and delicatessen. Timmer said the fire started just before 5 p.m. and was under control within 15 minutes. Officials were still investigating Wednesday afternoon what started the fire.

Timmer said there was moderate damage to both businesses.

Jeremy Branson, who was temporarily working at Arrenello's Pizza, said the restaurant was experiencing electrical issues before the fire started. The pizzeria was getting ready to open when workers saw flames coming from the ceiling.

Janet Tumidalsky, the manager of Accents on 45th, said she was cutting a woman's hair just before 5 p.m. when she saw all of the workers of Arrenello's Pizza run out.

"I went, 'Oh, that's not a good sign,'" she said.

The hair salon is one door east of Arrenello's Pizza and did not report any damage. Tumidalsky said they closed the salon early for the day as a precaution.

By 6 p.m., workers were allowed back into the businesses. Customers walked in and out of Ali Baba Market, which remained opened. Badeer Subah, the market's manager, said there was heavy smoke in the back of the plaza but there wasn't any damage to his business.

Mike Lieberman, a chef at Butterfingers, said officials were still assessing the damage to the business but expected it to be open Thursday.

Branson said he wasn't sure when Arrenello's Pizza would reopen.

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