One Cool Thing: Fat Bear Week

Image: Robert F. Tobler via Wikimedia Commons

It’s Fat Bear Week folks, and a winner must be chosen before hibernation season arrives. This annual competition is a National Park tradition and includes a March Madness style tournament where bear-lovers nationwide can vote on the heftiest, thickest bear to win it all. Twelve fat bears have been selected out of the estimated 2,200 that live in Alaska’s Katmai National Park and Preserve — and boy, are they beefy. Among the contestants is last year’s victor, Holly. Voters can check out each bear’s seasonal glow-up online, and even watch live as brown bears prepare for winter along the Brooks River in Katmai. 


Will Holly successfully defend her crown? Or will another fat bear reign supreme? It’s up to you, so don’t forget to vote for your favorite bear! The polls open on Wednesday, Sept. 29 and close on Fat Bear Tuesday (Oct. 5).

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