August 5, 2008

BRIEF: Lake Hope Park Lodge to Be Rebuilt

By Randy Ludlow, The Columbus Dispatch, Ohio

Aug. 5--MCARTHUR, Ohio -- More than two years after the landmark was destroyed by fire, plans are under way to replace the lodge at Lake Hope State Park.

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources finally has reached a $5 million settlement with an insurance company to cover the loss, said Ron Kus, state parks business manager.

A consultant is being hired to help design a replacement, which parks officials hope will be completed in about two years, Kus said.

The replacement, dubbed an "events center" will be designed to fit in with the natural beauty of the Vinton County park, he said.

A fire of undetermined origin destroyed the lodge on Feb. 10, 2006. Arson was ruled out. The lodge was built in 1950 with sandstone and an interior of chestnut oak.

The dining lodge was a popular setting for weddings, anniversary parties and family reunions.

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