SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — An organizer is promising refunds to about 2,000 people who were still in line when gates closed early for an annual Zozobra effigy burning ceremony marking the start of the Fiestas de Santa Fe.

The Santa Fe New Mexican reports that production organizer Ray Sandoval apologized and blamed long lines at security checkpoints, miscommunication and untimely thunderstorms for the lock-outs Friday at the Fort Marcy Ballpark and Magers Field.

Inside, more than 62,000 people watched Old Man Gloom burn.

Sandoval says long lines developed after organizers abandoned a no-backpacks policy established in 2001, but opened too few lanes for bag inspections.

The show also began about 15 minutes early so Zozobra could burn between two severe storms that brought lightning and heavy downpours.

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Information from: The Santa Fe New Mexican, http://www.santafenewmexican.com