It may have reminded some of the classic WKRP turkey giveaway (sans humor) when a virtual rain of dead birds nose-dived onto the festival, which has an annual attendance of 40,000. The pigeons had ingested poisoned corn, and authorities said they cleaned up more than 25 dead or dying birds following miscalculated pest control efforts atop a branch (bank branch, that is) of festival sponsor CapitalOne.

The Quadrangle Festival was celebrating its 25th anniversary, including performances from Shannon Brown and Trent Tomlinson. According to the Texarkana Gazette, festivalgoers first reported sighting the dead pigeons the first day of the event, and more were found throughout the weekend.

Ice cream stand operators Gary Bankston and Chris Flanagan were witnesses to the pigeons dropping.

“One (poisoned pigeon) was over here. One of the festival workers just set him down the alley,” Bankston said.

“I saw a pigeon nose-dive the concrete,” Flanagan told the paper. “It just kind of hobbled over and around and sat there and twitched.” No doubt an educational experience for the kiddies.

For its part, CapitalOne Bank said it had only intended to shoo the birds off, not kill them. The last straw was when one bird managed to get inside the bank and leave a deposit on a customer. Anti-Pest Co. of Shreveport, La., was hired to take care of the problem.

“We used a labeled product in the proper manner and unfortunately sometimes the side effects are the birds might have convulsions or the birds might die,” Anti-Pest President Jarrod Horton told the paper.

Among the results of the “side effects” were outraged festival-goers.

Vendor Vera Martin called it animal cruelty. “What is this telling our kids? If we killed (the pigeons), we would get a ticket or a fine. We raise our kids to protect these animals and they come and poison them,” she said.

Bank officials said the poisoned corn was only supposed to help get rid of pigeons and their droppings, not cause dropping pigeons.

“The death of these pigeons was more than an unfortunate accident,” Lacy McMillen, city president for CapitalOne Bank, told the Texarkana Gazette. “It was no intention of the bank to harm any of these birds.”