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Louie's Closed by Fire

Popular Store Shut Down by Arson in July

By Sandhya R. Rao

Louie's Superette, the convenience store located across from Mather House and a vital source of alcohol for neighboring residents, remains closed after it was damaged by fire in late July.

Police and fire officials reported arson as the cause of the fire, according to Louie's owner Cheng San Chen, who said police were unable to find the arsonist.

According to Chen, five buildings were damaged in the fire, but his store and the residence behind it were hardest hit. Chen said an insurance company is still assessing the damage to the store, which will be closed for at least two to three more months.

Mather and Dunster House residents moving in yesterday expressed dismay at the sight of an ash-stained Louie's.

"It was really sad. When we pulled in my dad was all excited to stop at the corner and get a beer, but it was closed," said Mather resident E. Pailin Gaither '94.

Louie's was a primary supplier of alcoholic beverages and late night snacks for students living in Dunster and Mather, the two river houses farthest from the Square.

"Louie's was one of the things that made Mather and Dunster a little more bearable to live in, but now we have to walk so far," said Steven C. Raser '94, a Mather resident.

Gaither said the closing down of Louie's "is going to cramp a lot of students' styles in Mather and Dunster since it was the closest place to buy alcohol."

Dunster resident Howard I. Miller '95 said giving up the convenience of Louie's may pose a security risk for some.

"Now the closest place is the Li'l Peach," Miller said. "I've had friends who've gotten mugged going to the Li'l Peach."

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