At the recent SLO Chamber of Commerce Expo, I discovered that a really fun event of interest to tourists will be coming to SLO County in 2016. Dozens of fiberglass cows (close to life size) will be purchased by sponsors, decorated by local artists, and then displayed to the public. The local event organizers hope to have about 40 of these fiberglass cows grazing in different locales though-out San Luis Obispo county. These will be displayed February – May 2016. Then they get auctioned off and the net proceeds donated to local charities. Do go their CowParadeSLO.com website for more details and sponsorship information.
This “Cows Parade” has the potential for making a really fun event, and a good tourist draw / reason for staying longer. Several years ago, my wife and I were in Maine, and made what we thought would be a quick stop in the small city of Belfast, Maine. It turned out that Belfast was hosting a very similar “bear” festival, with dozens of decorated life-size fiberglass bears on display though-out their downtown.
The Belfast bears were absolutely funny and charming. My wife and I ended up staying in Belfast most of the rest of the day, so that we could see all of them. (Do a Google image search for “Belfast Maine Bears” to see some images.)
While the “Cow Parade” is a licensed event that only happens once in a location, there would always be the option of using other animals / figures in future years. Years ago, Los Angeles had decorated angels (=Los Angeles, get it?). Santa Rosa, CA – hometown of Charles Schulz of “Charlie Brown fame- has displayed Charlie Brown characters in the past. One year city sponsors had the “Summer of Woodstock”, using the small bird “Woodstock” from the comic strip, as the main theme. (See pix. )
In a similar vein, Cambria’s delightful “Scarecrow Fest” in October has also proved to be a fun and popular annual event. So sponsors, get out your check books for an inexpensive way to guarantee a tourist draw to your business. Here’s to a new fun event that can be enjoyed by locals and visitors throughout SLO County.