Shortly before 4:00 this afternoon, an explosion and fire occurred on the Rabinoff property on Circketttown Road, destroying a metal constructed building (located just north of present Victor Drive). There were eight explosions in all and the flames were fed by a ruptured fuel oil tank as well as 5 gallon cans of alcohol. A still took fire and eventually exploded in what was the former theater of an opera school that Max Rabinoff never had much success with. Even old scenery was destroyed
The fire was discovered by Frank Clark as he passed in an auto. Wayne Hose could do little since there was no water in the area, but did wet down burning brush. Early arrivals who could see inside the building stated that the “still” was as large as any in Rockland County. Evidently, there was much recent activity at the site since the entrance road was well worn and showed the chain marks. Newspaper accounts also indicated that the fire smoldered until the next day.
Note: There was a previous fire several years ago at this opera training complex.