Downtown Opelika local businesses affected by a fire, including Maffia’s

Heroic firefighters fought for 13 hours to put out the fire. (Opelika Fire Department / Facebook)

Alabama, it’s time to give our sympathy to and help our neighbors in Opelika. On the morning of July 21, a fire swept through the historic district in downtown Opelika. Keep reading to find out more details and which businesses were affected.

The loss of local Opelika businesses

Opelika Alabama
Our hearts are saddened by this loss. (Opelika Fire Department / Facebook)

Early yesterday morning, the Opelika Fire Department traveled downtown due to news of a fire. The fire started at an Opelika favorite, the Italian restaurant Maffia’s. The local fire department, with the help of Lee County Emergency Management Agency and the Auburn Fire Department, was able to eventually fully extinguish the fire. However, sadly, Maffia’s and other local shops suffered severe damage.

Due to being completely destroyed, Maffia’s has to close. In a statement on Facebook, the restaurant said, “It is with great sadness that we announce Maffia’s burned down in that fire. We appreciated all the support that we have received from our loyal customers and hope to serve you again in the future.”

This is sad news and has a big impact on small, local businesses in town. Other businesses with damages include:

Helping the community rebuild

In a Facebook statement, the local fire chief is encouraging the local community to gather around these businesses in support.

“As Fire Chief, on behalf of all members of the Opelika Fire Department, I would like to express our sincere appreciation to our fellow citizens, local businesses and organizations that have reached out and made special efforts to encourage and offer support to our firefighters during today’s fire downtown. We were overwhelmed with food, refreshments and drinks to help keep our crews working over the 13 hours.

We ask you to join us in lifting up the business community today in the affected area that suffered losses. Several businesses sustained substantial loss today. Maffia’s suffered a total loss and Southern Crossing and The Gallery also sustained major damage. Several other businesses were forced to close or had severe limitations or inconveniences to their operations and to their ability to make a living. Please make every effort to support these establishments in the coming days and weeks.”

Shane Boyd, Fire Chief, Opelika Fire Department

Downtown Opelika was recently given an AARP Community Challenge Grant to build a new outdoor game station. In the coming days, we hope to see opportunities arise to help this area of town rebuild and thrive. Let’s support local Opelika!

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Selah Vetter
Selah Vetter
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