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Fire closes
Rusty Bison,
wakes villagers

Staff Report • Special to

Hartwick Fire Department #2 and other local volunteers were able to  quickly douse a fire at the Rusty Bison restaurant south of Cooperstown on state Route 28 early in the morning Saturday, Sept. 4, but the damage was extensive enough to close the restaurant for an unknown length of time.

The restaurant at 4938 Route 28 posted on its Facebook page Saturday afternoon:

“There was a fire at the restaurant. No one was injured. Thank you to whoever called it in. If you hadn’t seen it when you did, it would have been much worse. Thank you to Hartwick fire departments and the amazing volunteers that were they so quickly the damage wasn’t nearly what it could have been. We didn’t lose anything other than just building damage but we will be closed until further notice.”

The alarm roused many village residents about 4 a.m. Saturday and blared long enough to cause concern it might be more serious.

“I haven’t heard siren go on for that long since the brand new Thanksgiving Home burned down,” said one Cooperstown resident.

However, the duration appears to have been because of the need for responders and the eventual outcome was better than the worst-case scenarios. Damage was not visible Saturday morning at the restaurant from either Route 28 or from the front parking lot and the roof and front exterior of the restaurant —  formerly Redneck BBQ — appeared to be undamaged.




  1. This is such a shame! It’s one of our favorite places to visit, always fantastic food and a fun atmosphere. The owners are fantastic people.

  2. Mr. Santos – please reserve your judgment until you have all (or any) facts. Casting aspersions on people without knowing any information is a dangerous road to go down and I doubt you would like it if it were you. Do you have an axe to grind here?

  3. Paul Santos. That’s Rude ! And uncalled for. It’s not a failing business ! Your mom ever tell you if you don’t have anything nice to say say don’t say anything at all. ???

  4. Paul Santos. Rude ! Do you have inside information that is a failing business ? Cause it’s not ! Did your mother ever tell you if you didn’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all ? Cause this would have been the time.

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