San Francisco

'Terrible Acts of Vandalism': Playground in Golden Gate Park Targeted by Vandals

Portions of the Koret Children's Playground in Golden Gate Park were burned early Sunday in what officials are calling "terrible acts of vandalism," according to the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department.

Vandals appear to have set fire to the playground area, which is designed for older children, sometime before 12:30 a.m., according to Dennis Kern, the Director of Opertions for the San Francisco Recreation and Park Derpartment. Melted plastic slides and charred playground features are now roped off by yellow caution tape.

"It's very significant," Kern said. "Children's playgrounds are where kids and families bring their kids to play, to learn, to recreate, and to have somebody completely torch one of our premier playgrounds I think is an affront to the children and to the families of San Francisco."

Roughly 30 to 40 percent of the play area was damaged by the flames, Kern said. The damage could come to cost the city up to $1 million.

The fire is under investigation, according to the San Francisco Fire Department. No injuries have been reported.

The play area is closed for the day, but a nearby carousel will remain open.

The playground, which originally opened in 1888, is located in the southeast corner of Golden Gate Park, according to the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department. It was renovated and reopened in 2007.

Anyone with information regarding the fire is asked to call 415-920-2933.

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