Arts & Life
Canstar Community News
Brandon’s Central Fire Station won’t be vacant for much longer, as the historic site is currently being transformed into an event rental space.
While the people bankrolling this new project, titled "The Firehall," wish to remain silent for the time being, spokeswoman Heather Day told the Sun on Tuesday that they are looking to turn this building into a venue to host birthday parties, retirement ceremonies and especially weddings.
"The ultimate concept is that a bride and groom rent this space. They get it for the whole day," she said. "The bride gets ready in the loft, which is going to be all set up for that. They go downstairs and get married. They come back upstairs and have the reception."
Day went on to say that this location’s potential as an event rental space has already been proven over the last couple of years, since the Prairie Firehouse restaurant hosted countless gatherings like this in downtown Brandon until its owner decided to unexpectedly close the business down in late May.
Not wanting to see the beautiful, red-brick building fall into disrepair, the people behind "The Firehall" began putting the wheels in motion to kick-start this new venture six to eight weeks ago, and are now confident enough to unveil their plans to the public.
"When nobody was interested in this, we decided to take it into our own hands and put something in there ourselves," Day said.
Despite being originally built in 1911, Day said the Central Fire Station remains in excellent condition, with a spacious loft, full kitchen and expansive main dining room area that could accommodate a variety of events.
However, the Brandon business owner revealed that she and her team have been hard at work giving the building a facelift, hoping to pay tribute to the site’s 109-year history by providing a fresh coat of paint and collecting rare firefighter memorabilia to put on display.
"The electricians were there and the painters were there, so the work’s starting to happen," she said. "The hard part is … I don’t know if you’ve tried to order anything during this pandemic, but if you’re ordering big items, it all takes time."
Despite all the uncertainty that’s been brought about because of the COVID-19 outbreak, Day said they are hoping to finish all these renovations and host an open house by sometime in December, at which point they can start booking rentals officially.
Until then, the people behind "The Firehall" just wanted to reassure Brandon residents that one of city’s premiere event destinations won’t remain empty for much longer.
"So we’re just looking to make the best use out of that space and get it opened," Day said. "The future looks bright there."
The Prairie Firehouse restaurant occupied the Central Fire Station from 2015 until May of this year, when owner Anna Dumas announced via Facebook that the business would be closing its doors permanently, stating that she couldn’t reach a new agreement on the historic building’s lease.
However, the building’s owner later told the Sun that he was willing to work with Dumas to extend the lease.
The old fire station is located at 637 Princess Ave. in downtown Brandon.
» Twitter: @KyleDarbyson
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