Fire damaging Romain Park caused by arsonist leads parents to worry for park's safety

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- On any given day at Romain Park, you can find hundreds of families enjoying the basketball courts, soccer fields, and playground.

Now, these kids may have to find elsewhere to go.

"It does feel safe, but now after something like this, I don't know how safe it is," said Angelina Santos

Santos comes here three times a week for her daughter's soccer practice.

The damage to the rec center is deeply hurtful to her.

"There are tons of kids out here everyday, I don't know why somebody would do that, it's terrible," said Santos.

Firefighters say this is all the handiwork of an arsonist.

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And unfortunately, it's happened before.

Back in 2015, someone burned down the park's playground.

"It's actually is one of our most heavily used community centers. so it's very unfortunate, and we had over the last several years invested quite a bit of money," said Kristina Chamberlin, Assistant Director of City of Fresno PARCS.

Staff members are still estimating the damage.

But they already know all programming and events scheduled inside the building will be impacted short term.

"It's really heartbreaking when these things happen," Chamberlin said.

An already under-served community is already feeling the impact.

Structural engineers will be coming tomorrow to further evaluate the damage.

And also figure out when the power and water can be restored to the gymnasium and surrounding buildings.

Changes to programming will be posted on the PARCS website.
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