Hamilton’s, in August, where outdoor dining had been added due to the pandemic. Photo credit: @HamiltonsTavernSD, via Facebook

Customers and the community are rallying around the South Park bar and brewery that burned this week, causing $1 million in damages to the property.

They have launched two GoFundMe campaigns to help Scot Blair, who owns Hamilton’s and the neighboring South Park Brewing, stay afloat.

Both fundraisers cited the challenges the business has endured staying open while facing pandemic restrictions. The added strain of a destructive fire, they fear, will be too much to bear without the community’s help.

One fundraiser, started by patron Nikolina Trgo, has raised $921 as of late Friday. The other, by Sophia Volk, has brought in $3,051.

“This is a place of comfort and home for so many South Park/North Park locals and other San Diegans, so let’s help out our home!,” wrote Trgo.

Blair, a veteran, wrote Volk, “doesn’t deserve this and most definitely doesn’t have to face it alone.”

Volk also called Hamilton’s an “epic bar.”

“Hamilton’s is an inspiration for the level of customer service from local and small businesses. They support other breweries, and love their loyal customers – and make sure we feel the love,” she added.

Firefighters responded to the scene on 30th Street early Wednesday and saw smoke inside the building, according to San Diego fire officials. Crews found the flames in the bar’s kitchen.

No one was inside at the time and firefighters had the blaze under control in 25 minutes.

The fire caused an estimated $500,000 in damage to the structure and $500,000 in damage to the bar’s contents.

Blair, a former Marine, told CBS8 San Diego that he’s been through a lot worse experiences in his life. He holds out hope though for resuming operations.

“We know we’re definitely gonna be down for awhile. Can we come back? Can we survive or is this the final nail in the coffin. I don’t know.”

He promised though, that if the worst happens, “you know I went down swinging.”

– Staff and wire reports