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A tour of the Buc Days Carnival on opening night

Posted: 11:02 PM, May 02, 2019
Updated: 2019-05-03 00:02:40-04

The annual Buc Days Carnival began Thursday along the bayfront in Downtown Corpus Christi promising entertainment options for people of all ages.

“We’re having a really good time,” carnival-goer Katrina Garza said. “It’s one of our favorite events this year.”

Garza intentionally chose to take her husband and three young daughters to the carnival on its opening day, because she expected fewer people to attend than other days.

“When you have little ones you have to beat the crowd,” she said. “You have to get here early.”

While Garza’s daughters enjoyed the kiddie rides, the Tissi family set their sights on winning a stuffed, pink dolphin for their two-year-old daughter Taylor at one of the many carnival game booths. After a number of attempts and relaxations of rules, Taylor popped a balloon with a dart and received her beloved dolphin.

“She’s having a blast,” Taylor’s father Joe Tissi said.

There are several animal attractions at this year’s Buc Days Carnival. Along with traditional pony rides are pig races.

“We’ll put the pigs in the starting gate, and they’ll just run in the oval track, and the winner will get an Oreo cookie,” race announcer Elouis Pool said.

Pool has another piggie-attraction at her section of the carnival-grounds. For $10 you can snap a selfie with a baby, pot-bellied pig named after a former reality TV star.

“You can get your picture taken holding little Honey Boo Boo,” Pool said.

Rides for adults elicit screams and cries of delight, and the stage offers near-constant live performances. But it’s the carnival food that has lots of people flocking in.

“We just come out and have fun,” long-time carnival-goer Ray Pena said. “As long as they have turkey legs I’m alright.”