Camas bowling alley burned in training

By Mark Bowder, Columbian assistant metro editor

Published:

Updated: March 24, 2012, 7:43 PM

 
photoThe remains of the former Riverside Bowling Alley smolder Saturday after a training burn razed the 16,000-square-foot structure.

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A piece of Camas history went up in flames Saturday as part of a training exercise put on by the Camas-Washougal consolidated fire department.

The former Riverside Bowl in Camas, once a popular roller-skating rink and dance hall, had sat vacant at 3010 N.E. 3rd Ave. since 2007 and was recently released by its owners for use in a training burn.

The drill at the 16,000-square-foot building began with interior training burns and concluded with the destruction of the building.

Clear skies meant smoke was visible for miles.

About 25 to 30 firefighters from Camas and Washougal took part, as did members of East County Fire and Rescue.

A large crowd observed the exercise, including city officials from both Camas and Washougal, said Battalion Chief Mark Ervin.

It was one of the largest practice burns conducted in Camas in recent memory, according to Camas Fire Department Chief Nick Swinhart.

As of early March, no plans to build a new structure on the site have been submitted to the City of Camas by owners Marwan and Jacqueline Bahu and Howard and Lorena Reser, according to the Camas Post-Record.

Mark Bowder: 360-735-4512; http://twitter.com/col_cops; mark.bowder@columbian.com.