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River flooding continues in Midwest, with several towns expected to see crests Sunday

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    A restaurant sits surrounded by floodwater Saturday, April 20, 2013, in Louisiana, Mo. Communities along the Mississippi River and other rain-engorged waterways are waging feverish bids to hold back floodwaters that may soon approach record levels. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson) (The Associated Press)

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    Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon, right, walks away from floodwaters after meeting with members of the Missouri National Guard as they make flood preparations Saturday, April 20, 2013, in Clarksville, Mo. Communities along the Mississippi River and other rain-engorged waterways are waging feverish bids to hold back floodwaters that may soon approach record levels. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson) (The Associated Press)

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    Brenda Scranton helps move belongings out of her son's rented house as floodwater slowly rises around it Saturday, April 20, 2013, in Louisiana, Mo. Scranton's son, Richard Campbell and his family, plan to leave the house, which flooded in 1993 and 2008, and not return. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson) (The Associated Press)

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    Men work along a temporary levee in an effort to hold back the swollen Mississippi River Saturday, April 20, 2013, in Clarksville, Mo. Communities along the Mississippi River and other rain-engorged waterways are waging feverish bids to hold back floodwaters that may soon approach record levels. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson) (The Associated Press)

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    Members of the Missouri Nationals Guard and others work to shore up a temporary levee in an effort to hold back the swollen Mississippi River Saturday, April 20, 2013, in Clarksville, Mo. Communities along the Mississippi River and other rain-engorged waterways are waging feverish bids to hold back floodwaters that may soon approach record levels. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson) (The Associated Press)

An all-too-familiar springtime ritual is playing out around the nation's heartland this weekend as volunteers, National Guardsmen and even prison inmates join together in an effort to ward off fast-rising floodwaters.

Dire flooding situations dotted at least six Midwestern states following torrential rains this past week that dumped up to 7 inches in some locations. Record flooding was possible in some places as dozens of rivers overflowed their banks.

The floods and flash floods have forced hundreds of evacuations, closed countless roads, swamped farmland, shut down barge traffic on much of the upper Mississippi River and closed two Mississippi River bridges.

Several Mississippi River towns north of St. Louis were expected to see crests on Sunday, including hard-hit Clarksville, Mo.