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Anglers hit the Red River in search of catfish

The 31st annual Cats Incredible tournament got off to a slow start Saturday, but anglers were still having a good time. Cats Incredible is an annual Catfish Tournament held on the banks of the Red River of the North in East Grand Forks, Minn. The...

Grant Sorum, 8, prepares to send a fish back into the Red River at the 31st annual Cats Incredible on Saturday, July 28. (Sydney Mook / Grand Forks Herald)
Grant Sorum, 8, prepares to send a fish back into the Red River at the 31st annual Cats Incredible on Saturday, July 28. (Sydney Mook / Grand Forks Herald)

The 31st annual Cats Incredible tournament got off to a slow start Saturday, but anglers were still having a good time.

Cats Incredible is an annual Catfish Tournament held on the banks of the Red River of the North in East Grand Forks, Minn. The tournament is a two-day event and features up to 125 two-man teams. The max payout for first place is $5,000, second place $3,000 and third place $2,000.

The East Grand Forks firefighters union has run the tournament since 2013.

There were 95 total teams on the water Saturday morning.

Event organizers noted that Saturday seemed to be getting off to a slower start. Around 2:30 p.m. Saturday around 57 fish had been brought in and weighed, with a total weight of more than 400 pounds.

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Teams are limited to 10 fish each, with only five that may be weighed each day. Additionally, each fish must be at least 12 inches in length. If a fish is less than 12 inches, it counts toward the daily limit but will not be weighed. Only two fish per day may be more than 24 inches in length. Fish between 12 inches and exactly 24 inches are considered slot fish.

Cousins Crag Brodeur and Kris Novacek spent the day out in the water, testing their luck at finding catfish and slot. One fish they brought in weighed nearly 16 pounds.

"We're doing pretty good so far," Brodeur said. "We caught a right under five pound slot right away in the morning and he's been catching two big ones."

The two have been competing in the Cats Incredible tournament for five years.

"It's the best year yet," Brodeur said.

Anglers were required to get off the water by 4 p.m. and can head out again Sunday morning at 7 a.m.

Last year's tournament winners, Zach Srnsky of Grand Forks and Randy Bauer of Duluth, weighed in their five-fish limit each day for a two-day total of 77.96 pounds. A total of 107 teams fished last year's Cats Incredible, weighing in 666 catfish for a total weight of 4,498.51 pounds and an average weight of 6.75 pounds.

The event has something for everyone, including the kids who can run around on bounce houses or play a game of cornhole while waiting for the results to come in. Sunday will also feature a car show, starting around noon.

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Related Topics: FISHING
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