Fat Cat Newton (@FatCatNewton on Instagram) loves both the Bassmaster Classic and ICAST. But he’s not a pro.
“I’m just a super fanboy,” he says. “I hang out at tournaments, go to the weigh-ins and hang out with pros.”
That’s not to say Fat Cat doesn’t fish, himself, because he does — whenever he can find time.
“I work about 60 hours a week, driving a truck,” he says. “And when I’m not doing that I’m usually traveling.”
But Fat Cat knows he was on fishing boats when he was still in a stroller. His father’s side of the family were commercial fishermen on the Potomac River. During the day, they’d set and pull crab pots, trying to haul in as many blue crabs — a favorite of the Mid-Atlantic region — as they could.
Once he was out of the stroller, the White Oak, Virginia native would hit the river and go after white perch and catfish.
Today, when he gets the chance between work and events, Fat Cat stills drops his line into the Potomac, targeting bass and catfish or even snakeheads.
Apart from being a fanboy, though, Fat Cat is a popular celebrity in the fishing world.
Best known for his hilarious YouTube videos, Fat Cat is also a sought-after emcee for events like Brian Robison’s Reel ’em In charity tournaments and the Dick Hiley St. Jude Classic.
“I try to highlight the fun side of fishing,” he says. “Folks can get so uptight in this industry. If you don’t want to make fun of yourself, I’ll do it for you.”
Although he rubs elbows with some of the best-known anglers in the country — if not the world — Fat Cat is confident about his own skills.
“I’m the best fisherman I ever met,” he says.
He loves fishing not just because he grew up with it but also because of what it is.
“It’s different every time,” Fat Cat says. “I love figuring it out. It’s like a puzzle. You can’t just sit there with a can of beer, throw a worm in the water and expect to get a fish.
“I know it sounds cliche, but I also love just being outside in nature. It’s relaxing and peaceful.”
His love of fishing comes through in his videos, in spite of the comedy. But Fat Cat’s not sure where he wants to go with his burgeoning video empire.
“I just want to kind of let it happen,” he says. “I want to stay outside the box, keep it fun, make it work and make people laugh. I’d like it to pay the bills someday, but I don’t want to push it — I’ve already got one job I don’t like.”
One thing that he sees as important in what he does is his ability to reach youths who may not otherwise see fishing.
“TV is dying and social media is taking over,” Fat Cat says. “The future of fishing is in the youth and social media is the way to reach them.”
He does so by using humor to get them off their devices.
“I want to make people laugh — either with me or at me — and let everyone know fishing is fun,” Fat Cat says. “And I want to get kids off the Xbox and onto the tackle box.”