CALABASH, NC (WWAY) -- A big fire in a small Brunswick County town damaged a landmark restaurant Tuesday night. About 6:30 p.m. a fire call came into Brunswick County Dispatch. It was Captain John's in Calabash.
"When we got here it was a major fire," Brunswick County Fire Marshal Scott Garner said.
It took most of the night to get the fire out, and some crews stayed overnight just to watch for flare-ups.
"Five fire departments responded to the call as well, as Brunswick EMS and Calabsh Rescue Squad/EMS and Brunswick County Emergency Services," Garner said.
Seafood restaurants are one of the mainstays of this small community by the South Carolina border. Calabash is synonymous with seafood, appearing on menus throughout the Carolinas.
The Frink family built this restaurant, completing it in the summer of 1975, and they have operated it every season since then.
The season just ended. In fact the last day of business was Saturday night, so Captain John's was closed, and no one was inside at the time of the fire.
"Fire department was on the scene until 11 last night," Garner said. "There was good initial knock down on the major fire, but there was a lot of hidden fire in some of the concealed spaces that they had to work real hard to get out."
Residents and family members have been coming by all day checking on the damage and offering their support.
Garner said the cause appears to be electrical and occurred near the entrance. Damage is very heavy to much of the building. The clean up will continue, and family members are working on plans for the restaurant's future.