Berlin Township, Wayne County-- A massive, four-alarm blaze kept firefighters busy overnight.
An estimated 200 firefighters and other emergency responders from Wayne County and parts of southern New York responded to control the flames that ripped through a landmark establishment in the Beach Lake community of Berlin Township.
We're told patrons were still enjoying meals and drinks inside Joe's Ranch House when someone smelled smoke around 10:00 Thursday night.
Firefighters believe recent renovations to one of the area's oldest buildings may have helped the fire spread.
Beach Lake Fire Chief Tony Franklin explained, "Most recently it was done with an outdoor woodsman type of look. It was all tongue-in-groove, log-cabin siding. That's all soft pine. It was all shellacked, it was all varnished. It burned fast, and it burned hot."
There are also occupied apartments attached to the restaurant which sustained some damage during the fire-- leaving close to a dozen people temporarily homeless.
But we're told everyone-- patrons and tenants alike-- made it out safely.
Tim Eisenhauer moved here with two other roommates about a month-and-a-half ago.
He recalled, "Someone came up saying there was a fire. We got out. Then, all of a sudden, it just got out of control."
Those volunteer crews spent the overnight and early morning hours working to put out the blaze.
They had to truck in additional water supplies due to the ranch house's rural location.
Beach Lake Fire Lt. Mike Rogers noted, "We're definitely tired. It's been a long night-- 10 hours, 8 hours--whatever it's been. A lot of them are drawing from some reserve or something, but we have really good volunteers here. We have a lot of really dedicated people. It's nice."
One firefighter did suffer a minor injury to his arm while battling the blaze. He's expected to be fine.
Eyewitness John Schror said, "They hit it as fast as they could, and stayed right with it until the end. I think they all did a good job on it."
While the restaurant was destroyed, we're told the apartments might be salvaged.
A state police fire marshal has already been on scene and will spend the day investigating the cause of the fire at Joe's Ranch House.