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Stockton Community Center Reopens After Suspected Arson Fire

STOCKTON -- For Christina Aceves, the Northeast Community Center in Stockton is home.

"Oh, it’s the best, beautiful place I have ever been to,” Aceves said.

Aceves and the 500 people the community center serves were shut out since September because of what Stockton fire that investigators said at the time was suspicious.

"Pretty sad. Very sad," she told FOX40. "‘Cause it was terrible for all the people, community here.”

The flames ripped through a third of the building, to this day a part of the building remains closed.

"Even though we’re operating out of two-thirds of our building, we’re providing all the services that we did prior to the fire,” Lana Lozano, the director of the center said.

Lozano told FOX40 so many families depend on them because they offer meals, job development and other services for free.

"So this was a tragedy, but we are very happy to be back open in such a short amount of time,” she explained.

For Aceves, as long as they’re open and she’s surrounded by friends she’s happy.

"I don’t go very many places so this I enjoy,” Aceves said.

Lozano said they’re working to reopen the third of the center that is still closed in June or July.

The center had a soft reopening on Wednesday; Friday was their reopening celebration.