2021 World's Biggest Fish Fry ... Not Canceled Yet!
January 29, 2021
Paris, TN; home of SERVPRO of LBL South, and home of The World’s Biggest Fish Fry. SERVPRO of LBL South was the main sponsor for the Fish Fry last year, however it ended up canceled. SERVPRO is hoping the Fish Fry will be able to happen this year so we can sponsor such a well-loved community event.
The World’s Biggest Fish Fry is a premier event for Paris – Henry County and West Tennessee. The last full week of April annually attracts people locally as well as nationally. Visitors come from across the country to enjoy the festivities.
The whole festival revolves around the “Fish Tent” whereby last account over 12,500 pounds of catfish is served with all the trimmings. In addition to all you can eat catfish you will find parades, carnival, rodeos, catfish races, dances, arts, and crafts to name a few. Events begin early in February with beauty pageants leading up to the weeklong celebration.
The “Fish Fry” as everyone calls it around here 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” complete with a parade and beauty queens. When the tractor began to replace the mules the Chamber of Commerce contemplated 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 from Kentucky Lake and just did not live up to the palates of the fish eating public. The parade was short, and the event was held on the high school football field for one day and night.
In 1961 the Paris-Henry County Jaycees (Junior Chamber of Commerce) took over the “Fish Fry” from the Chamber of Commerce.
Since 1961 and thanks to the Paris-Henry County Jaycees the festival has grown unbelievably from 1,600 pounds of catfish cooked to over 5 tons of catfish and a two-hour grand parade.
An article was released a few weeks ago stating that no decision has been made yet for the Fish Fry this year. It is not cancelled, but the organizers are doing their best to make sure all safety precautions can be handled so that the event can still be put on! In this recent article, Plunk said, “We felt we needed to get the word out there that we are thinking about it and we want everyone to know as last year we want to make sure people are safe and we are doing what is right.” Check out the full article below.