Durant makes final cut in reality show contest - KTEN.com - Texoma news, weather and sports

Durant makes final cut in reality show contest

Posted: Updated:
Small Business Revolution co-hosts Ty Pennington and Amanda Brinkman reveal Durant as one of six finalists on February 12, 2019. (Facebook) Small Business Revolution co-hosts Ty Pennington and Amanda Brinkman reveal Durant as one of six finalists on February 12, 2019. (Facebook)
Small Business Revolution host Amanda Brinkman, right, speaks with a Durant shopkeeper on January 16, 2019. (KTEN) Small Business Revolution host Amanda Brinkman, right, speaks with a Durant shopkeeper on January 16, 2019. (KTEN)

DURANT, Okla. -- Durant is a finalist for a $500,000 redevelopment grant awarded by the Small Business Revolution TV show.

Dozens of anxious Durant residents gathered at the Opera House Coffee Shop Tuesday morning to watch as the hosts of the reality series made the announcement in a Facebook video: Durant was selected as one of six small American towns and cities that will compete for the coveted prize that will be decided by an online vote.

"There was a lot of nervous energy in the room for a few minutes while we were watching the video," said Durant Main Street director Stephanie Gardner. "Everyone was holding their breath for a few minutes until they got to our name, and it was just pure joy!"

"I was jumping up-and-down," Buddy Swicker added. "I almost threw my cup of coffee on the ground... almost!"

The other finalists are: Corsicana, Texas; Searcy, Arkansas; Camas, Washington; Cañon City, Colorado; and Washington, North Carolina

"Typically, we have five, and we could just not narrow it down to five," SBR co-host Amanda Brinkman explained as the finalists were revealed in. "So there are six towns moving on this year to the public vote."

Durant was just one of thousands of small towns and cities across America that had been nominated to be a part of the annual Small Business Revolution TV show, now in its fourth season.

After an aggressive #MyDurant social media campaign, Durant made the initial cut of 20 cities, and remained in the running as the reality series narrowed the list of semi-finalists to 10.

Producers and hosts of the series personally visited each semi-finalist last month to narrow the final list to six cities. 

"We were just really taken with the community residents, how willing they were to rally around something like this that's so positive," Brinkman told KTEN.

Now it's up to the voters. According to the rules, a person can cast one ballot per device each day until the voting ends at 10 p.m. on February 19.

"The trick is to get the whole state behind you," Small Business Revolution co-host Ty Pennington advised. "Call every relative you have and make new relatives... get married on Sunday so you have another person that's part of your family that can also put in a vote!"

Small Business Revolution is broadcast on the Hulu streaming service. Previous winners of the Main Street grant were Wabash, Indiana, Bristol Borough, Pennsylvania and Alton, Illinois.

KTEN editor Walt Zwirko in Denison contributed to this report. 

  • Submit a News Tip

    Do you have a news tip for KTEN?

    Begin by entering your email address in the field below or call 903-548-4010

    * denotes required fields
    We're sorry, but only one entry is allowed per person.
    Thank you for your continued interest.

    Your news tip has been submitted. If you provided contact information, we might use it to reach out to you if additional information is required.