Saratoga Co. community helps victims of barn fire

October 08, 2017 08:26 AM

BALLSTON SPA - The entire two-story barn was engulfed in flames,” said Andrea Smith. 

All that’s of the Mack Brin Farms in Ballston Spa is charred rubble and ashes.  

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Luckily no people were hurt. 

But dozens of animals lost their lives.

“We did lose about 100 rabbits yesterday and then head of the San Clemente Island goat herd you're on the farm,” Smith said.

Andrea Smith said there are only about 750 of the endangered goats in the country. 

She is an apprentice for the Randall Road farm's owner, Julie Murray. 

“She has been an active member of the community both in politics and fighting for farmers rights,” Smith said. 

Now the community is fighting for Murray. 

They have started a GoFundMe page to help her and her husband rebuild the barn. 

More than 100 volunteers, including Chuck Curtiss, also stopped by to help Murray and her family clean up after the fire broke out around 9:45 am Friday. 

“All the volunteers are helping put up temporary fencing temporary housing we've gotten several donations from local farms from farmers,” Curtiss said. “Ag businesses.”

The nearby Willow Marsh Farm is also taking donations for the family.

“A barn the goats were moved to after the fire hasn't been used in decades.

The walls are even sinking in. 

That is why it is important that a new barn is built before the winter comes.

“In order to be able to continue to provide food to the restaurants at Mac Brin provides food for in Saratoga as well as the farmers market we need to be able to continue on business as usual here on site,” Smith said. 

The fire dealt a double blow to the farm owners. 

It destroyed the barn's supplies and animal food.

It also melted equipment for the heating and cooling business Murray's husband runs. 

Luckily, the community is stepping up to help them pull through. 

“This is when Americans shine and this is when we become united it when we raise barns together.”
More than 150 goats, chickens, rabbits and sheep survived.

Some of the animals are staying in temporary housing. 

The fire still under investigation. 

Visit and click on links to learn how to help.


Nia Hamm

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