Thousands of revellers attend World’s Biggest Fish Fry parade
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PARIS, Tenn. — Banks were closed, schools were out and businesses were shut down Friday in Paris, all for the World’s Biggest Fish Fry parade. Locals know it as a holiday where thousands from around the country gather for catfish. “People from all over the world have heard about the fish fry,” Mayor of Paris Carlton Gerrell said. Marching bands, beauty queens, four-legged friends and more all entertained the thousands of guests lining the route of the 62nd annual World’s Biggest Fish Fry parade. “My favorite thing about it, you know, the fish is great, the parade is fun, but I think personally the best thing about it is the way the community gets around it,” Gerrell said. Gerrell said about 30,000 people from Tennessee and beyond make this weekend a tradition. “When the fish tent opened, there was a couple there, they were the second people in line and they come from Pennsylvania, and they drive down every year for fish fry,” Gerrell said. “They’ve done it for the last 4 or 5 years.” Another from out of town but not unfamiliar to Paris was this year’s parade grand marshal, actress Summer Crockett Moore, who’s best known for her work off-Broadway. “It feels so good to come home,” Moore said. “I used to come here all the time, and I would be one of the little kids on the curb at like 7 in the morning waiting, watching everything set up.” Attendees agree while they enjoy the fish, the company is what makes it special. “It’s kind of like a big party with fish,” resident Chance Chambers said. “It’s the best thing in the world to come home because there’s no where like Paris,” Moore said. “It’s just good to be here on this nice warm day and the sun shining down,” long-time Paris resident Larry Moore said. Fish tent chairman David Hayes said, “I just love the fellowship and the people getting to come out and enjoy the time with each other.” Organizers said at the end of the parade waits 10,000 pounds of catfish. The World’s Biggest Fish Fry runs through Sunday at the Henry County Fairgrounds.