Carrie Rengers

Felipe’s Mexican Restaurant has small lunchtime fire

Felipe’s Mexican Restaurant manager Miguel Lujano is saying a big thanks after a small fire at the chain’s 21st and Woodlawn restaurant.

“It’s just amazing,” he says of the response from customers and firefighters.

The restaurant is adding a new, 35-seat patio, and Lujano says welding on the final touches for it started a fire during lunchtime on Friday.

“It was just a small, little fire, but it started doing a lot of smoke,” Lujano says. “We had a full house, and it kind of scared everybody.”

He says customers reacted well, though. In addition to leaving in an orderly way, Lujano says a number of them left cash on their tables as they left.

“We were like, ‘No, no, no,’” he says.

Lujano says he realizes diners didn’t get to finish their meals, so he didn’t intend to charge them.

Felipe’s will reopen at 5 p.m. for dinner.

Lujano says customers have been driving by and calling to check on the restaurant since the incident. He says he appreciates them, the fire department and the diners who were at lunch.

“I want to give thanks because they took really good care of us.”

Reach Carrie Rengers at 316-268-6340 or Follow her on Twitter: @CarrieRengers.