Fall City residents are rallying behind the owners of Baxter Barn after the family announced an electrical fire recently destroyed the farm’s store and chicken house.
The electrical fire broke out just before 11 p.m. on Thursday, July 21, according to the Baxter Barn Facebook page.
In a GoFundMe post, Michelle Ushler, the daughter of farm owners Missy and Cory Huskinson, called the fire devastating, saying it destroyed the farm’s entire store and killed their baby chicks.
Since that post, the farm has seen an outpouring of community support, raising over $18,125 in donations in under a week, surpassing its $10,000 goal.
“We thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Your support and kind words have given us hope,” Cory and Missy wrote in a statement. “We love you dearly. If you’re lucky enough to live in Fall City, you’re lucky enough.”
In an interview Monday, Cory said it has been an overwhelming last few days and he has not had much time to sit down or think about the fire, spending that time cleaning up the property to make it safe to walk and drive through. Monday was the first day, Cory said, he has been able to reach out to vendors about replacing lost inventory, which he said totaled roughly $60,000.
“It’s been a crappy year regardless and this is the icing on the cake, but it’s given us more hope seeing the community help us out,” he said.
Cory said he is working on a list of what the farm will need and expects to post about a work party on Facebook soon.
Baxter Barn is a small working farm and historical site, listed on the state’s Heritage Barn Register, run by the Huskinson’s since they purchased the property from the Baxter family in 2007.
The Baxter family was among the earliest European settlers in the Fall City area, arriving via covered wagon in 1875, according to the Fall City Historical Society. Orin Baxter, who was 7 when he arrived in Fall City, purchased property near the west end of Southeast 44th street where he built a house and barn in 1905.
That property was later sold, but Bill Baxter, a third-generation Fall City resident and nephew of Orin, secured the lumber from Orin’s barn and chicken coop to rebuild a smaller version on the property he shared with his wife Eileen.
Bill and Eileen began rebuilding the barn during the 1950s and Bill lived there until his death in 1996. In 2007, Eileen sold the land and farm to Cory and Missy Huskinson, the current owners, who named their farm and business in honor of the Baxter family.
You can make a donation to Baxter Barn at: bit.ly/3RUXSJ4.