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Thousands who braved the cold to attend the inaugural Great Chicago Fire Festival left feeling burned by the experience.

Model Victorian homes that were floating in the Chicago River were supposed to go up in flames Saturday night, but crews couldn’t really get them to catch fire.

Had the stunt gone as planned, a symbol of Chicago would have been revealed in the ashes of each house.

It was meant to celebrate the rebuilding of the city after the Great Chicago Fire in 1871.

Organizers blamed recent rain, and moved on to the fireworks finale.