Catfish Derby fishing tournament update


The board of Savannah’s Catfish Derby and Riverfest issued a statement on Wednesday, Aug. 10 regarding the catfish fishing tournament that has traditionally been a part of the event for more than 80 years.

The statement is as follows:

It has come to our attention that there has been some confusion regarding the fishing tournament that has historically accompanied the Catfish Derby events and what is now the “Catfish Derby & Riverfest.”

The National Catfish Derby is a city-owned and licensed name, logo, and event. Due to unforeseen circumstances, we could not negotiate terms to move forward with our previous tournament, which resulted in there not being a Catfish Derby tournament in 2023. However, we are actively working to secure a new fishing tournament for the 2024 events.

The Catfish Derby & Riverfest this year will be supported by the Catfish Derby 5K Run, the revival of the historic National Catfish Derby Pageants, a variety of crafts dealers and food trucks, and the Riverfest Concert with headliner, Country Music Award winner, and Grammy nominee Jo Dee Messina.

Our number one goal is to continue to grow this event for our community and create family-friendly events that drive economic development and support charitable endeavors here in Hardin County along the way.

We hope you will join us on September 9 in Downtown Savannah!


The Catfish Derby & Riverfest Board