Evacuees from hundreds of homes and businesses in Solvang in Central California are being allowed to return after experts early Thursday removed a military ordnance found in the town's business district and rendered it safe.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff's office says the evacuation call was issued Wednesday afternoon for between 500 and 700 homes and businesses after the potentially explosive ordnance was found on Copenhagen Drive near houses.

Spokeswoman Kelly Hoover says the Sheriff's Department bomb squad and a bomb disposal team from Vandenberg Air Force Base cleared the ordnance shortly after midnight.

Officials released a photo of the ordnance and didn't provide any details, but it appeared to be some sort of artillery shell. There was no word on how it got where it was found.

The tiny town 100 miles northwest of Los Angeles is a tourist stop known for its Danish-themed shops and buildings.

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Information from: Santa Maria Times, http://www.santamariatimes.com/