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Cameron Peak Fire sparks concern for nearby residents, slowing down business

Cameron Peak Fire_Aug 18 2020_by Wellington Fire Wildland crew
Posted at 11:45 PM, Aug 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-22 02:13:43-04

BELLVUE, Colo. — The Cameron Peak Fire sparked several mandatory evacuations on Friday near two remote businesses, slowing down sales dramatically.

Campers stay at Columbine Lodge when they want to get away from the city.

Lisa Harger manages the property and calls it a hidden gem. She expected COVID-19 to impact business, but says it turned out to be one of their best summers until the Cameron Peak Fire ignited in Larimer County. Mandatory evacuations for the fire are in place less than 12 miles from Mishawaka and Columbine Lodge.

“Everybody is just afraid because of the fire,” Harger said. “We have almost lost 99% of our business in just the last week.”

She said campers canceled their reservations after the Mishawaka canceled shows due to air quality and outdoor conditions.

Tate Hoven is a server at Mishawaka. He said under the new COVID-19 guidelines, concerts bring in about 120 people and it helps boost business at the restaurant but he says, right now, it’s slow.

Harger walked around the nearly empty campsite.

“If we had a concert tonight, we would probably have about 60 people getting ready to go to the concert,” she said.

The locally-owned business depends heavily on summer business to pay bills in during winter.

The Cameron Peak fire is burning across nearly 17,000 acres as of Friday night.