Fire damages Sidetrack Bar and Grill in Florence

August 28, 2023

Mike Tanner

FLORENCE, S.D.–A bar and grill in Florence was damaged by fire this (Monday) morning.

The fire at the Sidetrack on South Dakota Highway 20 was reported just before 11 o’clock, a few minutes before they were ready to open for the day.

Owner A.J. Hanson tells KWAT News employees could see and smell smoke and called 911.

Fire crews from Florence, Wallace and Watertown responded. Watertown Fire Rescue supplied a ladder truck and ambulance according to Battalion Chief Craig Kruse, although the ladder truck was not used.

The fire was in the roof of the building, which made it difficult to get at.

Two hours after the fire was reported, fire crews from Florence and Wallace were still peeling back sections of the roof to get at hot spots. Watertown Fire Rescue was released from the scene about 45 minutes after arriving.

Hanson says the fire burned a hole in the roof “big enough to drive a Volkswagon through.”

He says the cause of the fire will be investigated by the State Fire Marshal’s Office. He says the damage will be repaired, and they’ll re-open for business as quickly as possible.

There were no injuries.