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Significant smoke damage: Classes canceled at Slinger High School following fire

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SLINGER -- Classes were canceled for students at Slinger High School on Friday, January 13th after an industrial strength dryer in the building caught on fire.slinger-hs

Officials say the fire was relatively small but there was significant smoke damage.

As fire alarms sounded Friday morning throughout the high school, students initially thought it was a drill.

"Everyone going out of the building was like, 'Oh my gosh, this sucks it's so cold outside. Why are we doing this today?' Then it ended up being real," said a student.slinger-hs3

The superintendent says around third period, staff in the fitness center noticed flames coming from an industrial size dryer used to dry sports uniforms.

"Our phy ed instructor called the head of maintenance. He came down and assessed the situation. They actually grabbed fire extinguishers and put out the fire themselves," said Slinger Superintendent, Daren Sievers.slinger-hs4

Students evacuated to the elementary school next door.

Once the fire department deemed the high school's field house safe, students returned to gym and were told their weekend would be starting early. slinger-hs2

"The day was so disrupted that we felt it was most prudent just to send them home. We had no way to feed them. And because the kitchen was shut down so early in the day, we had no way to meaningfully go through the rest of the day," said Sievers.

"People thought it was a bad thing because it was Friday the 13th, but it ended up being good," said Colby Hora, student.

The fire department spent the rest of the afternoon clearing the smoke and assessing why the dryer started on fire.slinger-hs5

The big question everyone here was wondering though: is tonight's basketball game against rival Hartford still going to happen? Superintendent Sievers says yes -- the 5:45 p.m. game is still on.