Merrymaking and businesses were stalled when a fire destroyed nine stalls at the old public market here on Tuesday morning.
Thousands of residents and visitors were strolling on the streets as the town celebrated the feast of Sta. Teresa de Avila when a fire broke out.
The local fire department immediately dispatched its fire trucks, preventing flames from spreading to adjacent buildings in the area.
Mayor Peter Valentin Tan, who was at his office just a few hundred meters from the public market, rushed to the scene to supervise the operation as firetrucks from the towns of Padada, Sulop, Sta. Maria and Digos City arrived to help local firemen contain the fire.
Based on a witness account, at least three stalls were razed including a bakery.
A car and a motorcycle were also gutted by fire.
The fire started past 11 a.m. and was under control by noon.
Arson investigators are still determining the cause and extent of the damage.