66°F
weather icon Clear

Fire performers burned at Pahrump luau

Updated June 12, 2019 - 7:00 am

A fire dancer was burned Saturday evening when part of his costume caught fire while performing at a luau outside the Lakeside Casino and RV Park in Pahrump where officials said another performer received lesser burns during the show.

Initially, the dancer did not realize his costume was on fire as the blaze spread on his left leg, said photographer Horace Langford Jr., who was at the scene on an assignment to cover the luau for the Pahrump Valley Times.

Fellow members of the dance troupe used a tarp to smother the fire, Langford said in his eyewitness account Sunday.

The dancer eventually was taken away by ambulance with Pahrump Fire and Rescue arriving at the scene.

A statement sent to the Pahrump Valley Times on Monday on behalf of Lakeside Casino and RV Park stated: “A performer from Hana Studio is now being treated at University Medical Center in Las Vegas and is expected to be released in a few days. A second performer was treated and released for minor burns. We are saddened that an event held to bring enjoyment to our guests took this unexpected turn. Our thoughts are with both performers.”

Wind may have been in a factor in flames blowing on the second performer, injuring him, officials said Monday.

Langford — the photographer — stated that fire dancer he had witnessed catch on fire had been using a pole, estimated at 5-to-6 feet long. The pole’s flames caught grass-type clothing and the dancer’s left leg ablaze prior to 8 p.m. Saturday, Langford said.

The pole had been dipped in some type of flammable material prior to the performance, Langford said.

No one in the nearby crowd was injured, and the show eventually resumed with another dancer, Langford said.

A pre-show announcement on the casino’s website referred to the event as the “Lakeside Luau” — a free, all ages show featuring Las Vegas Hula. “Enjoy the dances of Hawaii, Tahiti, Fiji, Samoa and so much more,” it stated.

Myra Tolo, owner of Las Vegas Hula, said Monday that the fire performers at the Pahrump luau were part of a separate group out of Utah and were not members of Las Vegas Hula.

Joseph Cancilla, the owner of that fire performing group — Hana Studio of Ogden, Utah —provided an update Monday on the condition of the hospitalized performer.

“He is in high spirits, happy that his recovery is going well,” Cancilla said.

Hana Studio performs about 130 times a year, Cancilla said. He described what happened in Pahrump as rare.

“We know the risks and possibility of what could happen,” Cancilla added.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
Annual plan for Pahrump’s Lakeview Golf Course presented

In December of 2017, the Nye County Commission narrowly approved the purchase of Lakeview Executive Golf Course, and while the financials involved with running the course have seen some improvement since that acquisition was made, the operation is not quite on par with some commissioners’ expectations.

Sisolak recall petition signing locations

The Battle Born Patriots, a recently launched political action committee seeking to recall Gov. Steve Sisolak, released a list of multiple signing locations around Pahrump and the greater Nye County area.

No new citations issued for COVID noncompliance

Improved business compliance with required health and safety measures implemented to slow the spread of COVID-19 led to no new citations being issued by the state Division of Industrial Relations during the week of Sept. 7.

Extension wants to match small businesses with help

This week’s University of Nevada, Reno Extension town hall and webinar will help small business owners learn about organizations that exist to help them grow.

Event aims at boosting rural entrepreneurship in state

The Nevada Governor’s Office of Economic Development is partnering with StartUpNV, Entrepreneur’s Assembly, Northeastern Nevada Regional Development Authority, business leaders and other government entities, in a new statewide initiative to foster entrepreneurship in Nevada’s smaller cities and towns.

Nevada gets $47 million in federal highway funds

The Nevada Department of Transportation has secured $46.8 million in additional federal highway spending authority for statewide road projects through the redistribution of Federal Highway Administration fiscal year-end funds. It marks the largest amount of such funds obtained by Nevada in a single year.

Sisolak orders flags to fly at half-staff to honor Ginsburg

Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak ordered the U.S. flag and state flag t0 be flown at half-staff at the State Capitol and state public buildings and grounds to honor Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died Friday.

USDA extends waivers for WIC benefits during COVID-19

The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Monday announced the extension of more than a dozen waivers ensuring participants in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children continue receiving the food and health support they need during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Eric Trump to stop in Pahrump on Thursday

Eric Trump is set to lead a “Make America Great Again” event in the Pahrump Valley on Thursday as the days before the 2020 election wind down.