Suspicious fire at local horse Arena

GROVERTOWN, Ind. -- The Indiana State Police Fire Marshal is looking into a suspicious fire that was set overnight at a popular horse arena in Grovertown, that did a quite a bit of damage to the popular venue.

Saylor's Arena is located off of US 30 and 1100 East Road in Starke County. Fire investigators believe someone jumped the fence and set fire to both the concession building and the announcers booth.

Getting the call and arriving on the scene was an emotional experience for three generations of Saylor's who run the venue.

There are not many bull or horse riding arenas left and that holds true right here across Michiana. That is beside the Saylor's Arena in Starke County in the little city of Grovertown.

Eurrat Saylor the owner of Saylor's Arena said, "We put this up in 1970." He said most years he barely breaks even with revenue, "It's not for the profit, it's for the kids to have fun."

It's now a third-generation family affair for the Saylor family.

Laura Saylor said, "We host horse shows and the rodeo and it's given my kids a reason not to do what somebody did to our place."

Laura Saylor, Errat's daughter-in-law got the call early Wednesday morning that vandals had jumped the fence and set fire to both buildings on their property. When they arrived on the scene 3 different fire departments were battling the flames.

"They were both fully engulfed and that everything pretty much was lost," Laura said.

Eurrat said, "The Fire Marshal from Columbia City and he's investigating everything, but it's definitely arson."

As Laura fought back tears she said, "It's kind of devastating when we have, we have we put so much time and effort and work into it and now we have to put more time, effort and work into it to get back where it was."

Eurrat said, "This is the second time, you see, before they turned my toilets over."

This time he said the vandals have done thousands of dollars worth of damage. "I put $200.00 worth of pop in there and it's gone."

Laura said, "If we did find out who did it, I would expect them to come help clean up. Nobody should have to have their place vandalized."

The fire also destroyed their electrical circuits, which means the PA and lighting system. The Saylor's are working with their insurance company to see what is covered. What isn't covered they plan to pay out of pocket, so they can get Saylor's Arena back up and running as soon as possible.

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