It's been a tough year for business throughout the Hudson Valley.

Unfortunately, many of our favorite local businesses haven't made it after the COVID-19 pandemic ripped through the area forcing them to close up shop. Back in early June, when businesses were finally given the okay to start serving again, albeit outside of the establishment, one Hudson Valley staple was dealt a major setback.

On June 7th The Gunk Haus in New Paltz was struck by a vehicle causing a fire and major damage.  

Of course, as we know, the Hudson Valley community is known for rallying behind our neighbors. A friend of the Gunk Haus family named Candace McCutcheon created a GoFund Me account to assist in the Gunk Haus getting back on its feet.

Over the course of a few days, $30,000 was raised.

McCutchen has updated the GoFund Me account with some great news. It looks as though following insurance claim reviews that "insurance will cover all repairs needed on the Gunk Haus." She explains that she "started this fundraiser immediately following the accident in hopes that it would assist with covering anything that was not covered by insurance."

So what will happen to that $30,000 raised by the Gunk Haus community? Well, it's going to a great place. McCutchen states that after speaking with Gunk Haus owners Dirk and Elizabeth Schalle, they will be donating the money to "the fire departments that responded to the fire on June 7th."

We reached out to McCutchen who told us that the Schalle family decided to split the money evenly and distribute to 8 different fire departments including Esopus, Clintondale, Highland, Milton, New Paltz, Plattekill, Modena and Gardiner. According to McCutchen each department will receive around $3,700.

It's a beautiful full-circle moment.

For the time being, the Gunk Haus is temporarily closed. In a statement on their website Elizabeth and Dirk said:

We will restore the restaurant and reopen as soon as we reasonably can. We thank you for your ongoing support and patience while we rebuild, as well as your generous donations. We look forward to welcoming you back in the near future.

The Gunk Haus is located at 387 South Street in Highland. You can visit their website or Facebook page for more information regarding their reopening.

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