HINESBURG-A popular convenience store and local morning community gathering spot was destroyed by fire March 3. Ballard's Corner Jiffy Mart, which opened during the 1980s and was located at the intersection of Shelburne Falls Road and Vermont 116, burned due to an accidental blaze.
Firefighters from several nearby towns arrived on the scene to battle the fierce fire. No one was hurt.
The fire, which totally destroyed the store but left fuel pumps untouched, was being blamed on an electrical problem in the store's furnace.
Vermont State Police first responded to Ballard's after midnight; a burglary alarm at Ballard's Corner Jiffy Mart alerted police. When troopers arrived, the store was in flames, according to Hinesburg Police Deputy Chief Frank Koss.
Koss said the neighboring Carpenter-Case Library would be closed March 3 due to water from the Ballard's fire.
Koss said the store had experienced some good luck and bad luck over the years.
In 1998, Williston resident Paul Degree purchased a winning $1 million Tri-State Megabucks ticket at Ballard's. But in 2001, a large amount of tobacco products were stolen.
Last summer, a thief drilled a large hole in the rear wall to gain entrance.