spring break virus (copy)

A crowd fills Magnolia Market during the Spring at the Silos festival in 2018. Magnolia has canceled this year's event.

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Magnolia announced Wednesday night it has canceled its Spring at the Silos festival because of the threat of the novel coronavirus.

The annual festival was scheduled to run Thursday through Saturday, featuring a daily vendor fair, concerts and catered rooftop lunches. Magnolia had responded to inquiries on social media as late at Wednesday saying the festival would go on as scheduled.

“The health and safety of our guests, our employees and this community is our top priority. After careful consideration, we have decided to cancel this year’s Spring at the Silos festival in its entirety,” spokesman John Marsicano wrote in a statement Wednesday night. “Out of an abundance of caution — given the rapidly evolving nature of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) cases — we felt this was the most prudent course of action.”

Earlier in the day Wednesday, the World Health Organization declared the outbreak a pandemic. Locally, Baylor University announced it would extend its spring break by a week and move for at least two weeks thereafter to online-only classes in an effort to prevent the spread of the disease.

While the Waco-McLennan County Public Health District has not reported any COVID-19 cases in the county, several cases have been reported in Texas. Nationwide, there have been 696 confirmed cases, with 224 new cases Wednesday and 25 total deaths, according to the WHO.

While Spring at the Silos is canceled, its host venue, Magnolia Market at the Silos, will remain open, as will other local businesses under the Magnolia umbrella, including the Silos Baking Co., Magnolia Table, Magnolia Press and Little Shop on Bosque, Marsicano said.

Magnolia will offer refunds and work with vendors, he said.

“All ticketholders will be issued full refunds, and all vendors will be given the option to receive a full refund or a credit for a guaranteed spot at Magnolia’s next vendor fair,” Marsicano wrote.

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