Claremore Daily Progress

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May 6, 2014

Battle of the Big Cats returns to Rogers County

CLAREMORE —

Route 66’s premier noodling showdown returns to Rogers County this summer with the second annual “Battle of the Big Cats.”
Scheduled for Saturday, June 14, “Battle of the Big Cats” will be hosted at the Claremore Expo Center, and draw contestants from Oklahoma, Kansas, Arkansas, Texas, Missouri, and a variety of other states, will be competing for over $10,000 in prizes. 
Festivities include live music, catfish fish fry, an assortment of vendors, and live noodling demonstrations. 
Contestants will weigh in their prize fish from 4-6 p.m. on the Outdoor Stage at the Expo Center. Prize money will be given out to Biggest Fish and Top Stringer of three fish for combined weight. After they weigh-in, each contestant will slide their catch down a water slide off the stage into designated holding pools for the crowd to see up close. 
There will be activities for everyone during the day. The Claremore Firefighters will host a fish fry starting at 12 p.m.
Plates are $10 for adults, $7 for children 12 & under and include catfish fillets, hushpuppies, coleslaw, and baked beans. Live entertainment will start at 3:30 p.m. to play crowd favorites. Event staff will demonstrate what it’s like to lock up with a giant, underwater, while showing techniques to find these monsters in area lakes and rivers. 
Additionally, this year Battle of the Big Cats presents the Kids Challenge.
 Spectators can purchase chances for their kids, ages 12 and under, to team up and noodle in the 3,000 gallon tank, with supervision. Fifteen teams will be randomly selected for the challenge. They will have 60 seconds to noodle one of the catfish in the tank. The fastest time of the day wins the $100 purse. 
Until last year, noodling tournaments only happened in other parts of Oklahoma, but with partners and experienced noodler, Kaleb Summers, this great sport came to northeast Oklahoma. Presenting sponsors of Battle of the Big Cats are Cherokee Casino Will Rogers Downs, NABATAK Outdoors, and Summer’s Drilling & Blasting, Inc. Additional sponsors include GRDA, Melton Sales, KVOO (media sponsor), Bill’s Marine, and John Parks Energy.  
Event organizer Kaleb Summers is a Claremore native. 
He is an avid outdoorsmen who started this event to bring noodling to Northeast Oklahoma. In 2013 136 contestants from Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, Missouri, and Kansas entered for their chance at a $5,000 prize for the Big Fish. 
For entry forms and more information on the event visit www.bigcatbattle.com or call Visit Claremore, toll free, at 1-877-342-8688.
 

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