After opening their doors for the summer earlier this month, Lola on the Lake was badly damaged in a fire that razed the lakeside pavilion early Thursday morning.
Firefighters were called to the scene about 4 a.m., MPR News reports, as strong thunderstorms rolled through the area. Though the outer walls remain intact, the interior and roof of the restaurant suffered heavy losses from the blaze.
With a refreshed menu from new executive chef, Eric Austin, Lola on the Lake was on its way to becoming a bustling summer hangout after a rough first season last year. Housed in the former Tin Fish space on the shores of Bde Maka Ska, the eatery was the third restaurant to join the Lola’s Cafe family, which also has concession stands at U.S. Bank Stadium and Jim Lupient Water Park.
“My biggest concern is my people,” shared owner and founder Louis King in an interview with KARE 11. “They had jobs here, this is how they pay their bills and take care of their families. We got kids coming home from college to get summer jobs... it’s kinda tough. The building, the business, all that... (pause) but people were counting on this. They have real-time responsibilities.. This is their livelihood. Everything else is secondary.”
- Fire engulfs Lola on the Lake at Bde Maka Ska [KARE 11]
- Fire heavily damages Bde Maka Ska pavilion, restaurant [MPR News]
- Coming soon: Lola’s on the Lake, an eatery with a mission [Southwest Journal]