HOLLAND TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — A fire destroyed the barn at Nelis’ Dutch Village near Holland early Thursday morning.
Ottawa County dispatchers told News 8 that around 12:30 a.m. authorities received a report that the barn was fully engulfed in flames. Nelis’ Dutch Village is located on James Street between 120th Avenue and Beeline Road in Holland Township. Firefighters were able to contain the fire to the barn and put out the flames shortly before 1:30 a.m., according to dispatchers.
President of Nelis’ Dutch Village, Joe Nelis, tells News 8 that animals inside the barn did perish in the fire. They’re still taking inventory and don’t know how many animals were killed. The barn housed rabbits, chickens, and goats.
Nelis said bystanders were able to free the animals in nearby outdoor pens. Those animals are now with a farmer who keeps them in the offseason. Nelis hopes to set up some sort of temporary structure so the animals can come back to the village.
Nelis tells News 8 the barn was built in 1969 with materials from other nearby structures.
The theme park is closed but the shops and cafe remain open. Nelis says he anticipates it will take a few days to clean up the area to make it safe for visitors.
Nelis said they are devasted by the loss but hope to rebuild.
There were no reports of any people being hurt. It’s unknown what caused the fire.
— News 8’s Jeremy Erskine contributed to this story.