RICHMOND, Mass. — Hilltop Orchards has reopened this weekend after a Christmas morning fire caused smoke and fire damage the its store.
David Martell, farm manager and master wine/cider maker, said the orchard faced uncertainty after the fire.
However, he said, with hard work, dedicated deep cleaning, and a retail inspection by the Massachusetts Department of Health, store is once more offering freshly made cider doughnuts and other products such as wines and Johnny Mash/JMASH Ciders.
"The Christmas day fire was tough but we know it could have been much worse," Martell said in a statement announcing the reopening. "We feel fortunate for so much: that our dog, Benjamin, barked and woke us up, that the Richmond Fire department and others responded quickly and put the fire out in 10 minutes, that no one was hurt, and that our staff and community have been so supportive."
Hilltop's farm building suffered damage because of a tractor's malfunctioning engine block heater. The farm building, production room, and retail space suffered heavy smoke damage.
Staff, and the Vittori family, owners of Hilltop Orchards, said they are grateful to Richmond, Lenox and other local fire departments for their quick response that resulted in limited damage.
Hilltop Orchards is once again open seven days a week, 9 to 5 p.m.
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