Teen-ager burned in bonfire mishap

Posted: Tuesday, July 09, 2002

KENAI (AP) -- A teen-ager was severely burned during a three-day party in Seward after accidentally lighting himself on fire.

Jace Fesler, 18, of Wasilla, had been attempting to throw gasoline on a bonfire when the fuel ignited around him. He suffered second- and third-degree burns on his face, hands and leg.

Fesler was treated at Providence Seward Hospital and then taken to Harborview Burn Center in Seattle. He was in satisfactory condition on Monday, a hospital official said.

Fesler was burned early Friday morning. The accident was only one of many problems associated with the ''Party on the Pond,'' which was held on private property near Preacher's Pond from Wednesday to Saturday.

Though party-planner Brad Snowden had both a liquor license and security for the event, Seward trooper Jeff Ebanoff said the Fourth of July celebration quickly got out of control.

Two adults were arrested for disorderly conduct and taken to the Seward Community Jail. Troopers also arrested some of the partygoers for drunk driving and using marijuana.

''Everyone there was underage and drinking -- about 99 percent of them,'' Ebanoff said. ''With 2,000 kids and nine troopers, it's not a good combination.''

Troopers also responded to a report of a vehicle that had been rolled on its side and windows smashed. Damage was estimated at $3,000, but no witnesses to the fight or the car damage were located.

Troopers also said a young man drove a car into a thicket of trees, causing extensive damage to the car. A log that pierced the car narrowly missed the man's leg.

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