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Nelis' Dutch Village to reopen after fire destroys historic barn

A week after a fire destroyed a barn and killed several animals, Nelis' Dutch Village is ready to reopen to visitors.

HOLLAND, Mich. — A week after a devastating fire destroyed a barn and killed several animals, Nelis' Dutch Village is set to reopen Thursday.

On June 9, an overnight fire broke out at the park's petting barn. Bystanders were able to get many animals away from the fire, but Nelis' Dutch Village owners posted on Facebook saying some animals were killed.

The park then closed for investigation and cleanup. 

"We sincerely appreciate the efforts of the great folks who saved animals from injury, the local fire departments, the outpouring of support from friends and the community, and we are thankful in that things could have been much worse," the owners wrote on Facebook after the fire. "Thank you for your understanding and support."

After the fire, the remaining animals were taken to their off-season home at a local farm. They will be returning Friday or Saturday as a temporary setup is completed, according to the owners.

"We very much appreciate the grace and patience of our community, visitors, and friends as we navigate this devastating experience," reads the post announcing the park's reopening.

Along with the reopening, special activities will be returning to Nelis' Dutch Village this weekend. Kids will be able to learn how to make stroopwafel at the park for the first time since 2019.

The Dutch village was opened in 1952. Since then, it's become a staple of the Holland community and the Tulip Time Festival.

The park opens at 10 a.m. For more information, visit the Nelis' Dutch Village website or Facebook page.

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