BOONVILLE — Make no mistake: Boonville will bounce back.
The four buildings and six storefronts, along with multiple apartments, that were lost to flames this week are history now. But the resilience of this northern Oneida County village endures.
Already, steps have been taken to help those businesses and apartment dwellers in need.
More than $11,000 was raised in a single day on a Go Fund Me fundraiser. Boonville native and resident Nicole Pitt, with the What’s Happening in Boonville New York (WHIBNY) Facebook page, helped organize the online fundraiser.
“Whether you live in the village or just visit, thousands of people have memories on Main Street,” said Pitt. “The amount of money WHIBNY raised in such a short time shows you the true nature of the people who love Boonville. We are caring, compassionate, and strong. We will get through this together and see Boonville bloom once again.”
Boonville Assistant Fire Chief Dean Yauger added: “The healing process has started. Everybody’s holding up pretty well.”
The fundraiser can be found online at www.gofundme.com/f/boonville.
Yauger said power and water authorities were on scene getting utilities up and running again, and building and insurance inspectors looked over the debris. He said the village and property owners are checking what permits are necessary to complete demolition.
In addition, the American Red Cross is assisting the displaced residents with food, shelter and clothing. According to the Village of Boonville, anyone wishing to donate to residents or businesses should contact the Utica Chapter of the American Red Cross at 315-733-4666. Businesses lost in the fire include Slim’s restaurant, A Cut Above hair salon, Davis Psychological Services & Consulting and Strands hair salon. Fifteen people lost their homes.
A special thanks goes to the volunteer firefighters who helped. Boonville, Remsen, Westernville, Stittville, Floyd, Woodgate, Whitesboro, Barneveld, Constableville, Port Leyden, Lyons Falls, Lowville and Castorland fire departments responded to the blaze in a true effort of mutual aid.
As village officials noted on their Facebook page, it was a sad day for Boonville. But no injuries were reported, and repairs and reconstruction and relocation are on the horizon. Boonville, as they said, will survive through this difficult time.