Sadness, nostalgia after suspected arson fire ravages Star City theme park

Arson is suspected in this morning’s fiery devastation of Pasay City theme park Star City, which was so severely damaged it will be closed for the rest of the year.

The blaze started just after midnight in the park’s stockroom where many toys and prizes are kept, fire marshal Paul Pili told ABS-CBN News. It quickly spread to the rest of the area and partially destroyed the radio and television studios of the Manila Broadcasting Company, which is also located in the same compound. The roof of one attraction, Snow World, collapsed while the park’s theater was completely ruined.

At around 2:25am, the fire became so severe that 19 trucks arrived in the area, CNN Philippines reported. Firemen were able to bring it under control at 4:30am.

MBC issued a statement regarding the damage and its impact, announcing that FM radio stations Love Radio, Yes the Best, and Easy Rock would continue regular operations.

“DZRH is expected to go back on-air within 48 hours or less,” it said. “Star City, which was hardest hit by the fire, will be closed through the Christmas season.”

The Fire Protection Bureau suspects the fire was started intentionally, according to GMA News, based on a social media post that said “Star City will die” reportedly shown to them by ballerina Liza Macuja-Elizalde, the wife of Star City owner Fred Elizalde.

Some people expressed sadness online over the destruction of the theme park, a favorite hang out for children since it opened in 1991.

“By sunrise, we’ll be waking up to a burned #StarCity. As a kid from the province, one of my most vivid memories were field trips to Star City. Feels sad to see all these go to ashes. Hoping everyone’s safe,” wrote @Theklmanuel.

“Star City, Pasay. Thank you for making my childhood awesome,” wrote @Aestheticmanila. “I hope the owner can recover and will still choose to build an amusement park instead of Condominiums and commercial instablisment (sic).”

“Please don’t say RIP to Star City, it will come back soon. This place gave us so much memories whether as a child or as an adult,” Tweeted @Whippedforloey.  “Please do pray for the workers who will be affected by the temporary closure. It will rise soon!”

@Dareut_ had only this to say: “Rise up, Star City!”

What are your favorite Star City memories? Tell us by leaving a comment below or tweeting to @CoconutsManila.

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