Texomans flock to opening day of Magnolia Festival

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DURANT, OK -- Severe weather brought the Magnolia Festival to a heartbreaking close Wednesday night.

Which is why vendors and visitors alike couldn't wait to get out here early Thursday morning to revel in the food, music and entertainment.

Joseph Goddard made molds of fair-goers hands.

"It's a very fascinating keepsake. And every one of them is original," he said.

It's the type of thing you'll find at the Magnolia Festival in Durant.

City Manager James Dunegan said they'll have nightly entertainment, food, an art show and free events for kids.

It's the second year they're hosting it at the Choctaw Event Center.

"If you walk around and look through the exhibitors we have some top quality exhibitors," he said. "It's a family fun event."

A new event this year is the cat-fish noodling competition on Saturday.

"I think it's gonna possibly make Saturday the biggest Saturday we've ever had at the Magnolia Festival," Dunegan said.

With the threat of severe weather this weekend, festival planners say they've moved all events indoors. They expect between 15,000 to 20,000 visitors to come through over the next few days.

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