JACKSON COUNTY – On May 20 the Catfish Festival will be held at the Jackson County Park. Visitors can expect to see a car show, entertainment, food trucks, artwork, crafts, and entertainment for children. The festival begins at 8:00 AM and generally lasts until approximately 3:00 PM.
For 22 years the Catfish Festival has been on the Scottsboro calendar. Originally it was presented by the Small Business Association, but when that group disbanded the local car club, Jackson County Cruisers and Living Word Ministries decided to keep the festival a part of Scottsboro’s activities for the benefit of the community.
Ralph Goode, President of Jackson County Cruisers, said, “The car show is a huge aspect of the festival. We generally have close to 100 vehicles enter our show. We have hot rods, muscle cars, motorcycles, antique cars, new models, and restored vehicles.”
Registration to show a car is $20 and the profits all go to the BackPack Program. This non-profit organization sends school-aged children home with packed nonperishable food items to eat over the weekend when families do not have sufficient food in the home. (To make a personal donation or become involved go to feedingamerica.org.)
Those showing automobiles may register upon arrival at 8:00 AM. Cars will be judged and awards for the 30 best vehicles will be given out. Winners receive a plaque courtesy of O’Reilly’s Auto Parts. Judging will begin at 10:30 AM. Awards will be given at approximately noon of that day.
The kids free zone offers inflatables, a train ride, and more. The arts and crafts area generally showcases woodwork, crocheted items, and paintings, among many other items. Local businesses set up booths with boutique clothing, Tupperware, T-shirts, Pampered Chef, Master Gardeners, Children’s Advocacy Center, Street Nails, and others. Non-profit organizations may set up booths for free, all other vendors pay a fee that goes to Living Word Ministries, Pastor Johnny Johnson.
Food trucks feature ice cream, funnel cakes, Italian cuisine, cheesy fries and many other comfort foods. There will be, of course, a catfish food truck which will also serve side dishes that complement the main entrée. “Everyone loves the ‘Catfish Lady,’” said Vickie Hastings. To become a vendor at the event call Vickie Hastings at 256-609-1409.
The festival is free, parking fee is on donation basis, which goes to the Boy Scouts who will be directing the parking.
Jackson County Park is located at 2302 County Park Road, Scottsboro on the banks of the Tennessee River. Bring a lawn chair and sit a spell.