GREAT FALLS — The owners of the historic Bunkhouse Inn in Augusta announced plans to begin construction on their new facility next month.
On October 10th, the Bunkhouse Inn was almost completely destroyed by a fire, but the owners have already set in motion plans to begin construction on the new hotel beginning in mid-February.
They hope to have the new Bunkhouse Inn open and ready for business in time for this year’s Augusta American Legion Rodeo, scheduled for June 25-27.
“Within days of the fire we actually started working with an architect and have been designing and trying to bring back kinda the original architecture of the hotel from when it was built out in Gilman,” said Matt Folkman, owner of the Bunkhouse Inn.
Pieces of the old historic Bunkhouse Inn were able to be salvaged after the fire, and will be used in the construction of the new hotel.
There were no serious injuries. The cause of the fire has been ruled undetermined at this point.
(OCTOBER 10, 2020) A fire engulfed the historic Bunkhouse Inn in Augusta on Saturday afternoon.
Not much information was immediately available late Saturday afternoon, but the Choteau Volunteer Fire Department confirmed the fire was still burning on Saturday at around 5:30 p.m. at the Bunkhouse Inn. Highway US-287 was closed at mile marker 39. A detour was set up.
The City of Choteau released a statement asking residents to "please avoid the Augusta area this afternoon. There is a large structure fire with several communities having fire units responding including Choteau and Fairfield."
The Augusta Chamber of Commerce also released a statement around 4 p.m. Saturday saying, at that time, the building was still burning.
"One of Augusta’s most beloved buildings caught fire today. And while we don’t know the full extent of the damages, our hearts are heavy for our friends at the Bunkhouse Inn," the statement read. "This fire is still active and they are continuing to battle it."
Battling the fire was a community effort: volunteer fire departments, local residents, farmers and ranchers, and Hutterite colonies helped out to make sure the fire didn't spread. Fire departments out of Choteau, Augusta and Fairfield were reportedly on scene, according to the Choteau Volunteer Fire Department. This is not a comprehensive list of responding units.
At this point, there are no reports of injuries, nor the cause of the fire.
We've reached out to several responding agencies and will update you when we learn more.