Photo by Paul Xing.

Helen Oriatti-Bruns

Copy Editor

On Friday, Feb. 17, a fire devastated Farmer Boy Restaurant on Cleveland Avenue in Wooster. The Wooster Division of Fire responded to a call reporting visible flames and smoke on the restaurant’s roof at 11:24 p.m. to find an “aggressive interior fire attack.” 

Firefighters were able to contain the fire to the kitchen and attic. However, according to a statement by the Wooster Fire Department, “the building is likely a total loss” due to the damage. The cause of the fire is unknown, although it appears to be accidental. 

Farmer Boy served American-style cuisine from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. every day.  The restaurant has been publicly mourned by many members of the Wooster community. 

A GoFundMe fundraiser for Farmer Boy employees has raised $4362 as of Monday, Feb. 19. Mindy Jackson, organizer of the fundraiser and Farmer Boy affiliate, wrote on GoFundMe that the donations would be used to “help relieve financial burdens” for employees, some of whom were Wooster students.

“Many of our staff rely on this job as their only source of income,” Jackson wrote. “Although each staff can file for unemployment, payments will not be any where close to what people actually made and could take weeks to get the first payment.”

One individual commented on the GoFundMe that the restaurant was “such a part of our community”; another described the restaurant as “family oriented.” As the future of Farmer Boy remains uncertain, Jackson emphasized the fire’s negative impact for many in Wooster.

“Many of our customers were like family and all employees too,” Jackson wrote. “This is a very sad and unfortunate thing to happen in our community.”