Ash and co. finally arrive at Pastoria City, and meet Crasher Wake, the Gym Leader, who had some business to attend to: The Croagunk Festival. They also meet Hamilton, and his Croagunk Craig who won the last festival. Brock wants to compete because the winner's Croagunk will marry the Croagunk that belongs to Nurse Joy, and Brock wants to marry Nurse Joy herself. Will Brock's dream come true, and will Ash get his Gym Battle?
The heroes came to Pastoria City. As Ash goes into the Gym, he is knocked out by a huge brute of a man. The man is the Gym Leader named Crasher Wake. Though a bit intimidated, Ash challenges him to a battle. Wake declines, as he has some business to attend to, but he offers them to come with him to witness something. They run into a train. Through the Pastoria Marsh, the heroes come out of the train and run, following Crasher Wake, but eventually lose him. Dawn tells Piplup to stop making noises, but Piplup does not do them - some shiny eyes from the grass seem to be the source. They spot many Croagunk go somewhere, some with their trainers by their side.
They seem to have come a festival, where they find Wake. Wake tells them that the Croagunk participate in a festival dedicated to the Croagunk guardian of the Pastoria Marsh. Every year the Croagunk gather to win the crown with the diamond. Suddenly, Brock hears and spots a boy arguing with Nurse Joy. He hears that he wants marriage and stops him. The boy, Hamilton, corrects him, saying he wants his Croagunk to marry Nurse Joy's. After all, Hamilton's Croagunk has the crown, marking that he won the festival before. Hamilton leaves with his Croagunk, Craig. Joy is sad to see that she failed to convince him Chrissy, her Croagunk, does not like Craig. Brock flirts with Joy, thinking he should win the festival with Croagunk and his Croagunk will marry Chrissy and problems would be solved. Naturally, Croagunk's instincts force him to attack Brock.
Team Rocket came as well, though they are now dirty. James remembers well that here is where he dragged Carnivine away from the mud and Carnivine was grateful. James sends Carnivine to bring the memories back. Meowth asks Jessie why are they here, besides James' reunion. Jessie remembers there is a Croagunk festival, planning on using someone to be Croagunk and win the festival. Ash and Dawn see Wake is working on setting some things before the festival. Team Rocket also see that the twerps came as well. Now, Wake tells everyone that the winner receives the crown (with Hamilton putting the crown on the pedestal) and joins the judges (Nurse Joy and Carny). The Croagunk come and sit, so the judges decide whether it was good or not. When Brock's Croagunk came, the judges are amazed by his appearance, despite he looks the same as others.
When Meowth, dressed as Croagunk came, the judges are also amazed, even Ash and Dawn see the difference. Now it is the test of strength; the Croagunk need to destroy the bricks to pass. The judges see that many bricks are destroyed, but Brock's Croagunk destroys all ten of them. Meowth comes and prepares himself, then strikes, but only breaks his arm. Brock's Croagunk goes to final stage - he needs to battle Hamilton's Croagunk, Craig. They go in the boxing ring and the battle starts. Craig uses Cross Chop, hitting Brock's. Craig uses Dynamic Punch, but misses. Brock's Croagunk uses Poison Jab, hitting Craig. Suddenly, from the sky, a Croagunk robot, made by Team Rocket, falls down. They take the crown, so Crraig and Brock's Croagunk attack. However, they are taken into the robot. Pikachu goes to use Thunderbolt, but Dawn warns Ash he might hit the Croagunk. Wake goes to handle the situation, but realizes he left the Poké Balls in the Gym.
So, the other Croagunk attack. So, the robot collects the Croagunk. So, Nurse Joy and her Croagunk, Chrissy, march. They evade the robot's attack and Chrissy uses Vacuum Wave. This causes the robot to be knocked out and the Croagunk escape. With a Thunderbolt, the robot explodes and Team Rocket are blasted off. Wake receives the crown back and thinks Chrissy should have the crown. Brock and Hamilton agree and Chrissy is this year's champ. Wake saw Pikachu in action and accepts Ash's challenge tomorrow. Wake plays some instruments and Ash joins the dance.
- David Brimmer (The Voice of Saladine in Winx Club and Odion in the Original Yu-Gi-Oh!) Returns to the Pokémon series as the voice of Crasher Wake.
- Incidentally, Jason Griffith (The voices of Brawly, Tate and now Cilan) also returns to voice Hamilton.