IF YOU GO
• What: 75th annual Cotton States Cat Show
• When: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday
• Where: Convention Center at Gwinnett Center, 6400 Sugarloaf Parkway, Duluth
• Cost: $6 to $8
• For more information: Visit www.cottonstatescatclub.org
DULUTH — This weekend will be full of hair balls, catnip and toy mice as the Gwinnett Center is invaded by cats competing in the 75th annual Cotton States Cat Show on Saturday and Sunday.
Owners of Persians, Devon Rexes, Maine Coons and other breeds will spend at least an hour primping their furry friends to enter the ring for the organization’s “Diamond Jubilee” celebration.
“We are decorating the Gwinnett Center like it’s never been decorated before,” said C.A. Folds, member of Cotton States Cat Club. “All the 10 rings are in different bling colors — diamonds all over the place. It’s going to be pretty glitzy.”
On Saturday, Duluth Mayor Nancy Harris is proclaiming Saturday and Sunday to be “Cotton States Cat Show Weekend.” The proclamation will be read when the show opens to the public.
“It feels pretty good,” Folds said.
The felines who enter the contest are divided up in three categories: kittens (4 to 8 months old), champions (8 months and older, not fixed) and premiers (8 months and older, spayed or neutered). Eight judges examine each cat during the two-day show, giving awards out in each class. They each choose the top 10 cats and kittens to look at for “Best in Show.” The judges will individually give out awards and some cats may win more than once.
The felines rack up points that accumulate over the year. At the end of the judging season, points are tallied and the cats with the highest marks win within separate categories. The top award is the Cat Fanciers’ Association’s “Cat of the Year.”
Cotton States Cat Club is expecting more than 1,000 spectators to show up for the competition. Attendees have a chance to join raffles to win cat prizes, such as toys, treats, clothes, mats and more.
Vendors will set up shop offering items “that you can’t get in a regular retail store,” and different no-kill shelters will be present with animals to adopt and information about each shelter.