City crews begin tearing down former Midnight Rodeo that went up in flames

Building that housed Midnight Rodeo caught fire early Wednesday

SAN ANTONIO – Crews with the city of San Antonio already have begun tearing down what was left of an abandoned bar that caught fire early Wednesday morning.

The fire had caused the roof and several walls to collapse on the building that once housed Midnight Rodeo, near the corner of Nacogdoches Road and Thousand Oaks.

RELATED: Permanently closed bar on Northeast Side erupts in flames, has roof collapse, SAFD says

Firefighters answered a call around 4:30 a.m. about smoke in the area but initially had trouble locating the fire inside the 25,000 square foot structure.

“It was a maze for our firefighters, very dangerous conditions,” said Fire Chief Charles Hood.

He said throughout the years, the bar, which permanently closed in 2019, apparently had undergone numerous renovations that resulted in several layers of wood inside the building.

Although firefighters had a tough time breaching the building’s secured doors, Hood said they found evidence that homeless people had been inside it recently.

He said the building still had working electricity until about a week ago, and the inside of the bar was practically the same as it had been when it shut down.

“There was liquor, everything you would need for a night club was just left,” he said.

About three hours after fire crews began their battle, the fire roared back to life when the roof and walls collapsed.

Huge flames shot out from the front side of the building.

They eventually were able to knock the fire down, then a demolition crew brought in heavy equipment to begin tearing down the remains of the building.

The exact cause of the fire is still under investigation.

About the Authors

Katrina Webber joined KSAT 12 in December 2009. She reports for Good Morning San Antonio. Katrina was born and raised in Queens, NY, but after living in Gulf Coast states for the past decade, she feels right at home in Texas. It's not unusual to find her singing karaoke or leading a song with her church choir when she's not on-air.

Azian Bermea is a photojournalist at KSAT.

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