No one was hurt in a fire March 22 at 4041 Harriet Ave., and the housecat safely weathered the fire in the basement.
But the damage has shut down James Stanton’s Organic Hair Salon while the house is repaired.
Stanton said he left the house for about 40 minutes that Saturday afternoon to run an errand.
“My daughter called me and says, ‘Dad, the house is on fire.’ I went home as fast as I could,” he said. “I was just in total shock.”
He said the house was built in 1914, and a fire investigator pointed to what may be faulty wiring as the cause. Assistant Fire Chief Bryan Tyner said the official cause is not yet undetermined, and the fire appeared to originate on the front porch.
Stanton said he’s lived in the house for 31 years and raised his children there. He ran Uptown Haircutters at 28th & Hennepin until 1982, and he’s operated a salon out of the house for about six years. Stanton said he started using nontoxic organic hair care products in 2003, and he’s since been swamped with business, with clients traveling from North Dakota and Wisconsin.
“It was a real gift for me that came along. In my 60s, I became popular,” he said. “People were just so desperate for natural stuff.”
He’s considering taking a temporary spot at Sola Salon Studios in Edina.
“When you’re a hairdresser, you’re always a hairdresser,” he said. “I’ve had people coming to me for 45 years.”
His daughter created a GoFundMe campaign that has raised more than $10,000.
Stanton said he’s amazed at the support, and said it will help him pay the mortgage while the house is repaired.
“It’s just so wild how your life can change,” he said. “You just have to move on and make the best of it.”