An early morning fire at Noccalula Falls Park caused significant damage to a beloved petting zoo and claimed the lives of 75 animals.

According to a release issued from the City of Gadsden, the fire was reported at approximately 5:45 a.m. Sunday morning. When firefighters arrived, they found the petting zoo barn fully engulfed in flames.

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Big fire at Noccalula Falls Park.

Posted by Barry Morgan on Sunday, May 2, 2021

No human injuries reported, and the Gadsden Fire Department has launched a full investigation to determine the cause of the blaze.

This is such a heartbreaking story. I was born in Gadsden, and many of my family members still live there. I can't tell you how many times I have visited Noccalula Falls--it was the site of countless birthday parties, picnics, and many childhood memories.

Although the petting zoo wasn't added until my adult years, I have had the chance to visit with my own family. My daughter loved walking through and seeing the reptiles, amphibians, and other animals that were on display.

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