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Catfish on parade

Jack Kyle, executive director with the Mississippi Commission for International Cultural Exchange, and Vicksburg Convention and Visitors Bureau Director Lenore Barkley check out a 7-foot fiberglass catfish on display at the VCVB Tuesday. Kyle said about 200 catfish will be displayed in Jackson as part of Mississippi Catfish on Parade from April 1 through Sept. 30. Any business or individual can sponsor a catfish for a $2,000 tax-deductible sponsorship that helps bring attention to the catfish industry and support the exhibit, Kyle said. Sponsors have their choice of a painted or unpainted catfish and can commission their own artwork if it is approved by the MCICE Art Review Committee. After the parade, sponsors may purchase their catfish for $500, or it will be auctioned at a gala supporting the Mississippi Commission for International Exchange in October. The proceeds from the auction will benefit The Glory of Baroque Dresden Exhibition, an international art exhibition headed to Jackson through the MCICE in 2004. For more information about catfish, artists, sponsors and partners, log onto www.mscatfishonparade.com.(Melanie Duncan Thortis The Vicksburg Post)