Smoke escapes from the roof of Mulligan’s Sport Pub and Grill, 1318 Racine St., the morning of July 3 after firefighters cut a hole in the roof of the newly renovated building to vent heavy smoke (Photo by Ed Nadolski).

Mulligan’s burns at new location on Racine Street

By Vicky Wedig


For the second time in about three years, Mulligan’s Sports Pub and Grill burned.

Mulligan’s burned March 5, 2010, at its location on Highway 50 in the old Ralph’s Steak House building. The structure was a complete loss and was razed, and the lot next to Reed’s Marine on the Delavan Lake Inlet remains vacant.

Mulligan’s re-opened a few months ago in the old Arizona Inn building at 1318 Racine St. That building caught fire at about 5:20 a.m. July 3.

Assistant Fire Chief Tim O’Neill said Mulligan’s owner Pete Prien reported a fire in the basement that he was trying to put out with a fire extinguisher. When Delavan firefighters arrived, they found heavy heat and smoke on the first floor that prevented them from getting to the basement, O’Neill said.

The fire went to a Mutual Aid Box Alarm System third alarm, bringing 14 fire departments to the scene, O’Neill said. He said fire was damage was contained primarily to the basement and the floor structure of the one-story building, but no damage estimates have been made.

The Office of the State Fire Marshal and the Walworth County Fire Investigation Task Force were continuing to investigate the cause of the fire Monday, O’Neill said. The organizations are working with Delavan Building Inspector Fred Walling and Prien’s insurance company to determine whether the building can be repaired, he said.

O’Neill said the State Fire Marshal could have an initial report on the cause and determination by the end of this week, but any items that need to be sent to the state lab for additional testing could take several weeks.

A significant amount of water gathered in the basement of the building because of a broken pipe from the fire and water used to put the fire out, O’Neill said. He said the water needed to be removed before the cause of the fire could be investigated.

O’Neill said the building has operated as a bar and restaurant since the late 1950s and was originally the Arizona Inn. Prien owns the building and the business, he said.

A cleaning crew was in the building at the time of the fire, but no one was injured, O’Neill said.

Prien could not be reached for comment Monday.