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Three Bears Gift Shop Complex Burnt To The Ground

Pigeon Forge, TN
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120 posts
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Three Bears Gift Shop Complex Burnt To The Ground

The Three Bears Gift Shop complex in Pigeon Forge burnt to the gorund last night, Dont know status of the live bears, looks real bad...

May God Bless,

steve&carolyn DTS

Tennessee
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2,511 posts
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1. Re: Three Bears Gift Shop Complex Burnt To The Ground

How very sad. Please keep us posted.

Greenwood, Indiana
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147 posts
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2. Re: Three Bears Gift Shop Complex Burnt To The Ground

The question was how could the bears be tranported out of there??? You can't put them on a lease. It looks bad for them. )-: You know though, that place had aweful living arrangements for them. It was so very dark, damp and the cages were camped. If they made it out alive that is great and I hope 3 Bears puts more care in the living arrangements for the bears.

Brettman

Pigeon Forge, TN
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3. Re: Three Bears Gift Shop Complex Burnt To The Ground

Best we could find out is the bears were in a concrete enclosure behind the store and are supposedly OK.

May God Bless,

steve&carolyn

VA
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58 posts
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4. Re: Three Bears Gift Shop Complex Burnt To The Ground

knoxnews.com/news/…

Bears survive as Pigeon Forge landmark burns

By Don Jacobs (Contact)

Originally published 08:24 a.m., September 23, 2008

Updated 08:24 a.m., September 23, 2008

Pigeon Forge firefighters this morning were greeted by flames shooting through the roof of a city landmark, the Three Bears Gift Shop that touts live bears for tourists to feed.

Firefighters were alerted at 3:57 a.m. of the "large commercial fire" at the business at 2861 Parkway, said Pigeon Forge Fire Chief Tony Watson. The chief said he arrived at the scene within three minutes of the call.

"It was already through the roof when we arrived, " Watson said.

About 45 firefighters with 10 units attacked the flames consuming the 15, 000-square-foot, two-story gift shop, the chief said. There were no sprinklers in the building.

Firefighters from Gatlinburg and Sevierville joined the effort. No one was injured.

"The five bears seem to be fine, " Watson said. "They’re in the back, and it’s all concrete and steel so were able to keep the flames out of there."

Firefighters set up fans in the den area of the bears to keep smoke from invading the bears’ living space, Watson said.

Watson said firefighters had control of the flames about 5 a.m. but he said the business was "totally consumed by flames." Firefighters also had to keep flames from jumping to the nearby Pigeon Forge Gem Mine, which sustained water damage.

Authorities closed the northbound lanes on the Parkway during the blaze, but Watson said he expects those lanes to be open by 8:30 a.m.

Watson said a track hoe was brought in to knock down some walls that continued this morning to conceal flames.

"We still have two ladders pouring water on it, " the chief said. "Something like this will burn quite a while. We’ll probably be out here all day."

Watson said the Fire Department and Pigeon Forge Police Department jointly will investigate to determine the cause of the fire.

More details as they develop online and in Wednesday’s News Sentinel.

Roselle Park, New...
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5. Re: Three Bears Gift Shop Complex Burnt To The Ground

thanks for the update. Im so glad the bears are ok.

Greenwood, Indiana
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147 posts
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6. Re: Three Bears Gift Shop Complex Burnt To The Ground

no sprinklers??? I'm sure Steve could answer this question. Isn't that a fire code issue???

Hats off the the Pigeon Forge Fire Department on defending the fire from the bears. They brought in fan and everything. Good job guys!!!!!!!!!!

Brettman

Tennessee
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97 posts
2 reviews
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7. Re: Three Bears Gift Shop Complex Burnt To The Ground

Glad the bears were okay. Just seems cruel to me to keep them like that anyway.

Louisville, Kentucky
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8. Re: Three Bears Gift Shop Complex Burnt To The Ground

So glad the bears are ok! I think it is disgraceful that the owners were allowed to keep them in those conditions. They should have been released into the wild along time ago. If for some reason they are not capable of surviving in the wild, they should be turned over to a zoo where there are people specifically trained in the care of these animals. Brettman - I agree!!! How in the world did this building pass code inspection without operating sprinklers?!

Fredericksburg, VA
1 post
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9. Re: Three Bears Gift Shop Complex Burnt To The Ground

Supposedly these bears could not go into the wild because they were rescue bears from a zoo. According to a story on another website the bears were at a zoo in Indiana that went bankrupt and the zoo was going to sell them to a bear hunt facility. The 3 Bears people took them instead. Since they had already been in a zoo and were held captive they could not have gone back into the wild.

In regards to the sprinkler issue, I am not sure what TN law is but in VA there are plenty of businesses without sprinklers because they were not required in all new commercial construction until just recently.

Greenwood, Indiana
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10. Re: Three Bears Gift Shop Complex Burnt To The Ground

I agree kjgouge,

Hey guys, If you like going to that sort of attraction then you need to go to the one in Cherokee. It is a great place to look at alot more then just three bears. The bears are alot happier and have plenty of room in their clean cages. If you call it a case. Did I mention they have cubs too???

Anyway, if you go though the National park and come into town and you will see a Indian at a TeePee next to a swinging bridge leading to a giftshop. The giftshop is part of a little mall. BEWARE of the great smelling German nuts in there, LOL It is in there. It is a staple to every one of my Smoky Mountain vacations.

Brettman