MIDDLETOWN (KPIX 5) – Hardester’s has been a part of the Middletown community since the 1940s. Today, it’s role has never been more vital.

Nearly one week after the Valley Fire tore through, the grocery store just got power Thursday.

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It has been a mad dash to get things ready since. They donated all the food that was about to spoil and they are stocking up on extra generators and hardware they don’t normally carry, in anticipation of residents returning.

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Hardester’s is also giving out free trail mix to firefighters, their main customers at this point, until the town returns to see what’s left of it.

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As of late Thursday night, the fire has burned 73,700 acres and is 35 percent contained, according to Cal Fire.