Ashes To Ashes

It will take several weeks to remove a film of soot remaining from a fire that damaged Ralph Engelstad Arena on the University of North Dakota campus in Grand Forks July 3, according to venue officials.

The fire began in a cluster of speakers above the center of the arena, causing prevalent smoke damage but not harming the structure. The cleaning is considered to be an extensive process.

All summer activities at The Ralph will go on as scheduled, and smoke-damaged merchandise has been removed and replaced. Damage to the venue, which will be ready for fall sports activities, was pegged at $1.5 million.