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World's Biggest Fish Fry

Home | Kentucky Lake Area Events | World's Biggest Fish Fry

The World's Biggest Fish Fry is held each year in Paris, Tenn.  Featuring all-you-can-eat catfish and all the trimmings, an arts and crafts show, parade, Bell City Carnival, catfish races, junior fishing rodeo, IPRA Rodeo, and a whole lot more.  The 2017 schedule of events is posted below. 

2017 Schedule of Events

Saturday, April 22

  • 5K Hushpuppy Dash - entry fee is $20 or you can preregister for $15.  The event will take place at Henry County High School.  Registration is at 7:00 a.m. with the race at 8:00 a.m.  For more information, call (731) 644-1143.
  • Bed Races - Located at the First United Methodist Church in downtown.  Bed judging begins 11:30 a.m. with the race at noon.  Entry fee to race is $75 on day of event (register by 11 a.m.)  - $50 to pre-register.  For more information, call (731) 644-1143.
  • Demolition Derby - entry fee is $40 for those who want to participate in the derby.  Spectator admission is $10 for adults, kids 6-10 is $5 and under 5 is free.  Event time is 7:00 pm. at the fairgrounds.

Monday, April 24

  • Kick-off Party & Street Dance - featuring Ray Lewis band.  Event is downtown and is from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Tuesday, April 25

  • Carnival - at the fairgrounds - 5:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.
  • Country Dance - $5 admission fee, featuring The Legends - located at the fairgrounds.  Event time is 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Wednesday, April 26

  • Fish Fry - all you can eat for $12.  Kids 6-12 is $8.  Located at the Fish Tent at the fairgrounds.  Dinner served from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
  • Carnival - at the fairgrounds - 5:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.
  • Christian Concert - featuring The Brett Perkins band.  Admission is $5 located at the fairgrounds. Event time is 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Thursday, April 27

  • Arts and Crafts Show - at the fairgrounds from 5:00 to 8:30 p.m.
  • Fish Fry - all you can eat for $12.  Kids 6-12 is $8.  Located at the Fish Tent at the fairgrounds.  Dinner served from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
  • Carnival - at the fairgrounds - 5:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.
  • IPRA Rodeo - at the fairgrounds at 7:30 p.m.  Admission is $5 (family night discounted rate)

Friday, April 28

  • Arts and Crafts Show - at the fairgrounds from 10:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.
  • Grand Parade - 10:00 a.m. located on East Wood Street.
  • Fish Fry - all you can eat for $12.  Kids 6-12 is $8.  Located at the Fish Tent at the fairgrounds.  Served from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
  • Carnival - at the fairgrounds - 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.
  • IPRA Rodeo - at the fairgrounds at 7:30 p.m.  Admission is $10 for adults, $8 for kids.

Saturday, April 29

  • Car Show - Paris Elementary School.  Judging begins at 9:00 a.m. with awards at 2:00 p.m.
  • Small Fry Parade - downtown Paris at 10:00 a.m.
  • Arts and Crafts Show - at the fairgrounds from 10:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.
  • Catfish Races - 10:30 a.m. in downtown.
  • Junior Fishing Rodeo - free for kids up to 12 years of age.  From 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. located at Williams Lake
  • Carnival - at the fairgrounds - 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.
  • Fish Fry - all you can eat for $12.  Kids 6-12 is $8.  Located at the Fish Tent at the fairgrounds.  Served from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
  • IPRA Rodeo - at the fairgrounds at 7:30 p.m.  Admission is $10 for adults, $8 for kids.

Sunday, April 30

  • Carnival - at the fairgrounds - 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

For details and more information on all events, please call (731) 644-1143.

Overview & History

The "Fish Fry" evolved from "Mule Day," which originated in 1938 with the Paris Post Intelligencer as the first sponsor.  Farmers came to town on the first Monday in April to trade their mules and other farm products, do their shopping and enjoy the fellowship of their friends.  Early in the 1950's, the Chamber of Commerce took over "Mule Day" and the tractors took the place of mules.  The Chamber of Commerce started looking for another event to replace "Mule Day."

In 1953, the Chamber of Commerce held the first "Fish Fry."  The event was not as successful as hoped.  The fish were not taken from Kentucky Lake and just did not please the fish eating public.  The parade was short but sweet, and the event was held on Barton Field for one day and night.

In 1961, the Paris-Henry County Jaycees took over the "Fish Fry" from the Chamber of Commerce.  The "Fish Fry" was starting to grow too much for the Chamber to handle, so the Jaycees (Junior Chamber of Commerce) took over the event, taking the name of "World's Biggest Fish Fry," an event that truly lives up to its name.

Since 1961, the "World's Biggest Fish Fry" has grown considerable - from 1,600 pounds to over 5 tons of catfish being cooked and served at the Robert E. "Bobby" Cox Memorial Fish Tent.

Community participation and support of the "World's Biggest Fish Fry" unites the community in many ways.  Community involvement by attending one of the five beauty pageants, buying souvenirs, eating fish dinners, attending the rodeo, entering or watching the Grand Parade or the Small Fry Parade, and going to the carnival makes the event successful.

The history of the "Fish Fry" started with the farmers and their mules.  Each past "Fish Fry" makes new history by trying new and different things, increased attendance, more catfish served, and more community involvement.
The Paris-Henry County Jaycees hope to make the "World's Biggest Fish Fry" bigger and better each year.

Information from the World's Biggest Fish Fry website

 


Colorful Bridge
Photo by Shane Dunnaway

In the back of Hematite Lake in LBL are a series of boardwalks and bridges. In autumn, spectacular colors of foliage are scattered throughout, as seen here on this "colorful" bridge.