CHARLESTON -- A fire destroyed a well-known Mississippi County restaurant and part of its store over the weekend.
Employees of Wally's Chew Chew Restaurant, owned by Wallace Reeves and part of Reeves Boomland located off Exit 10 of Interstate 57 in Charleston, alerted the Charleston Department of Public Safety when they smelled smoke while working around 9:45 p.m. Saturday.
"The fire actually started in the attic above the snack bar area," said Reeves' daughter, Sharon Rolwing, today. "The fire marshal was here and was in the attic, and we don't really know what caused it."
The restaurant and half of the store were completely destroyed, Rolwing said, adding the original part of Boomland, which opened in 1977, was unharmed.
Reeves Boomland also sells fireworks, which were stored at the opposite end of the building where the fire started and did not ignite, Rolwing said.
Reeves Boomland will be closed indefinitely and at least for the "next few days" so family and employees can clean up the area, Rolwing noted.
She said: "We're just thankful no one was hurt, and we will rebuild."
Several other local law enforcement agencies assisted Charleston DPS at the scene. Charleston DPS officials were not available for comment early today.