Naugatuck holidays go up in smoke

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By Ted Glanzer Republican-American

NAUGATUCK — Firefighters quickly knocked down a blaze inside a popular local food truck parked outside the owners’ Allerton Road residence Thursday, December 23, but not before the fire caused more than $100,000 in damage.

Ian and Dawn Frew, owners of the Not Just Blowin Smoke food truck, were preparing beef sliders inside the truck in celebration of the return of Dawn’s son, Michael Farina, a 19-year-old corporal in the U.S. Marine Corps, who is on leave from Camp Pendleton in California.
But a faulty smoker caught fire at about 12:30 p.m., tearing through the truck and resulting in a “total loss” that includes three smokers, a generator, other accessories and the truck itself, Dawn Frew said.

“We were having his friends over tonight and smoking (Michael’s) favorite dinner, and apparently the smoker … caught on fire — there were flames everywhere,” she said.

Frew credited Naugatuck firefighters for arriving on scene and knocking down the fire within minutes.

There were no injuries, for which Frew said she was thankful, but the truck represents the heart of the family’s business.

Ian Frew is the master chef and Dawn Frew, as well as Dawn’s daughter, Gillian Farina, help run the operation.

The food truck, which specializes in barbecue, has a busy season that runs from spring through early winter, though the Frews also cater events during the colder months, Dawn Frew said.

She didn’t know whether insurance will cover the loss, she said.

Farina has set up a GoFundMe page to help the family defray the cost of rebuilding the business. For information, visit bit.ly/3mwGQ5Q.