Fire destroys part of former YWCA building in Winona - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Fire destroys part of former YWCA building in Winona

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Photos courtesy Hans Dammerman and KTTC Photos courtesy Hans Dammerman and KTTC
Photo from Brenda Duscher Photo from Brenda Duscher
Photo courtesy HBC/KTTC Photo courtesy HBC/KTTC
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  • Fire destroys Winona gymnastics center

    Fire destroys Winona gymnastics center

    Photo from Brenda DuscherPhoto from Brenda Duscher
    By 11:30 Thursday morning, more than 80 firefighters from four different departments were hard at work trying to stop a fire at a popular gym at 223 Center Street in Winona.More >>
    By 11:30 Thursday morning, more than 80 firefighters from four different departments were hard at work trying to stop a fire at a popular gym at 223 Center Street in Winona. More >>
Winona, MN (WXOW) - -

Investigators will work through the night looking for the cause of a fire that destroyed half of a downtown Winona building and closed surrounding businesses Thursday.

No one was injured in the fire.

Firefighters were called to KidSport at 223 Center Street around 11:00 a.m. after a delivery man reported the fire according to owner Rob Murray. He told the Winona Daily News that no one was in the former YWCA building at the time.  Murray said there was an early morning practice at the gymnastics training facility,  but that everyone had left.  KidSport trains young gymnasts from around the state and region, some who compete at the national level. 

A Winona Fire Department spokesperson said the part of the building that housed KidSport was destroyed.  The building, which dates from approximately 1912 according to the spokesperson, had the roof collapse during the fire.  Flames and smoke were clearly visible during the two hours it took to contain the fire. 

While the older part of the building was destroyed, the newer half was spared much damage due to fire doors between the two, said the department spokesperson.  More than 80 firefighters from four area departments helped to extinguish the fire.

The spokesperson said that they used an abnormally large amount of water to put the fire out.  The department had to request an additional pump from the city's water department to help get water to the scene.

Due to the large amount of smoke and crews at the fire, a half-dozen businesses and buildings in a one block radius around the fire scene were evacuated.

WXOW's Heather Armstrong is on the scene of the fire and will have live reports on Live at Five and the 6pm Report.

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