A fire that destroyed a Foxborough wedding venue as a ceremony was underway Saturday night was caused by careless disposal of smoking material.
The wedding ceremony fire destroyed the century-old Lakeview Pavilion, which was being torn down on Sunday.
Foxborough Deputy Fire Chief Steve Bagley said the fire likely started in the rear of the building.
“What we believe is someone flicked a cigarette in to the mulch and the mulch got going and spread [the fire] to building,” Bagley said.
Justice of the Peace Jerry Cibley said he had just pronounced a couple as husband and wife. As the new married couple and their bridal party walked down the aisle, Cibley said he and the disc jockey noticed smoke.
“I literally pronounced them husband and wife and just introduced them. They started playing the recessional, they were walking down the aisle toward the other end of the hall … all of a sudden the DJ and a few of us looked up and saw smoke,” Cibley said. “I thought it was coming from a fog machine.”
The smoke was actually coming from the walls.
The 3-alarm fire broke out just after 7 p.m. Bagley said the staff was quickly able to get everyone out of the venue and that there were no injuries.
About 110 people were inside at the time of the fire.
Between 50 and 75 firefighters from multiple towns responded. Bagley said he ordered everyone out of the building because of the intensity of the fire.
“You could tell the fire and the smoke was traveling extensively,” Bagley said. “Also there was high winds at the time. There was really no stopping it.”
Cibley said he was disappointed the couple couldn’t celebrate their wedding, but glad no one was hurt.
“Imarried them legally and everyone got out safe, which is the most important thing,” he said.
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