UPDATE: Oregon District businesses are bouncing back after devastating blaze

Credit: Jim Witmer

Credit: Jim Witmer

Finding a commercial mixer among a sea of boxes probably never felt as good as it did for Ulrike Massey.

"I was so elated. I can't bake cookies without it," the owner of Spice Paradise in the Oregon District said. "When I found the mixer I was like 'yes, one more step toward being in business.'"

>> Salar owner after fire: ‘My heart is broken for my people’ (Dec. 30, 2017)

Spice Paradise was among about a half-dozen business impacted by the New Year's Eve weekend blaze that gutted much of Salar Restaurant and Lounge, 400 E. Fifth St., in Dayton's Oregon District.

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Dozens of workers have been displaced or are otherwise out of work.

Hicks Barber Shop & Shave Parlor thus far is the only affected business in the Emporium building at 400 E. Fifth St. to reopen.

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Massey hopes to have a soft reopening in mid-March and a grand reopening in April.

As part of his updates to tenants, Massey said Adil Baguirov, the building's owner, says all impacted businesses plan to return.

The Salar space and the upper level of the building sustained significant damage. Work continues.

>> Multiple Oregon District businesses to be closed for months after destructive fire; owners vow to return  (Feb. 2, 2018)

Massey said she is happy to be a part of downtown Dayton’s reemergence.

“We were offered spaces in other parts of town. I just didn’t want to do it,” she said.

Like Hicks, Massey and her husband, David, launched Spice Paradise in 2013 as part of Activated Spaces' Popup storefront downtown occupancy project.

Massey said her inventory of spices and other food items were destroyed by the smoke.

She said her time has not been wasted.

After the fire, Massey started working out of a temporary space, fulfilling wholesale orders mainly.

She left that space Friday and is now in the process of sorting through boxes and unpacking.

Massey came up with new cookie recipes and plans to offer more gluten-free options.

“I am not the kind of person to sit around,” Massey said. “I’ve done some serious work and some things I don’t have time to do when the shop is open.”

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