Menemsha Market, the iconic general store that has operated in summers since the 1920s, will not reopen this summer due to extensive damage caused by a fire last Thursday, the building’s owner said this week.

“It completely needs to be gutted,” said Debbie Packer, who owns the wood-frame building with her mother Dorothy Packer. “There’s a lot of smoke damage and you can smell it from outside of the building. We don’t think that reopening this summer is a realistic goal.”

The Jan. 24 fire began when a utility pole near the Galley restaurant came down in high winds during a coastal storm. The pole landed in pooled water near the market and arcing wires sparked a fire, igniting the front of the market. All three up-Island fire departments responded as well as Eversource to cut the power and contain the blaze.

Ms. Packer, who lives nearby with her husband Howie Grimm, witnessed the fire. “That fire just happened so fast,” she said. “It was the scariest thing I’ve ever experienced in my life.”

The call came in at 4:40 p.m. and firefighters had contained the blaze by about 6:45 p.m., assistant Chilmark fire chief Timothy Carroll said. Residents in the surrounding area were without power while emergency responders and utility crews did their work.

Ms. Packer said she was relieved no one was hurt and that the fire occurred while the market was closed in the off season. She said heavy rain also helped minimize what could have been a larger disaster.

“In the summer it would have burned down. We could have lost the whole building,” she said. “It’s the best of the worst case scenario.”

She said insurance will help cover the cost of reconstruction and repair, but the work will likely not be finished in time for this summer.

Kevin Oliver, who has operated the market on and off for the past 20 summers with his wife Liz, echoed the praise for emergency responders and said his livelihood will be affected when the market stays shuttered this year. The Olivers usually live on the second floor of the building during the summer.

“We’ll get through it okay, but it’s definitely a financial hit,” he said.

He said the fire badly damaged the first floor of the building, where coolers, refrigerators and the cash register are all melted and beyond repair.

“A lot of fixtures were damaged,” Mr. Oliver said.

Ms. Packer and Mr. Oliver also said they have already received an outpouring of support from the Island community.

“I want to say how grateful I am for the incredible response from the community and all of Tri-Town,” Mr. Oliver said. “When you’re in a helpless moment like that . . . and people are showing up . . . it’s a powerful thing.”

“That building has a lot of collective memory for a lot of people,” said Ms. Packer. “I’ve received calls and texts and email from so many people who care about the building. It’s just close to the community.”