The Walker Art Center held its annual Cat Video Fest this week and made 13,000 St. Paul spectators and several cat-video creators very happy.
The “Golden Kitty,” top prize for all-around best video of cats, went to “Cat Behavior Finally Explained.” The public voted online for its favorite flick and festival organizers announced the winner Aug. 12 at a baseball-field screening, which displayed 100 cat videos. Among other nominees, Brain Freeze, Pavlov’s Kitty and Hover Cat were in close contention.
Will Braden, the man behind “Henri le Chat Noir,” curated the event. This year, he and organizers dedicated the festival to Cecil the Lion, whose tragic death at the hands of a Minnesota dentist shocked the country, and especially upset cat people.
Before Braden awarded prizes, a scoreboard posted a photo of the “Golden Kitty” statuette alongside caption: “This is a trophy.” The image then changed to a picture of Cecil, with text reading: “This is not.”
Fans cheered Cecil’s tribute. All attendees clearly shared a love of cats, big cats being no exception.
Small cats, however, got the greatest displays of love. While no live cats attended, cat people displayed their fandom with cat-ear accessories, whisker face-painting or all-out, 3-D vivid cat outfits. We love you, cat fans.
Grand prize Winner Alana Grelyak has made many other award-winning cat videos as part of her Cat CATastrophes series, and that YouTube channel has received almost 2 million views. Grelyak is a Cat Writer’s Association member, promoter of rescue cats (all her video stars are adoptable felines) and a nominee and winner of the Catdance grand prize. She’s legit, and we’re thrilled for her.