CowParade Goes SLO

"The World's Largest Public Art Event" to swish its tail on the Central Coast.

DRIVE AROUND CALIFORNIA... and you're bound to, at some point in your journey, see a beastie of the most bovine sort standing not too far from the road. Perhaps he is grazing, or sunning, or having a bit of water, but whatever he is up to, you can be contented to know that you've just had the cowiest of encounters. A little less likely, though? Spying a cow that is stationary, and in a city, and covered with splashes of paint and whimsical polka dots or bold stripes. Should you see a bovine like this, you can be pretty assured of one thing: You're looking at a piece from CowParade, "The World's Largest Public Art Event."

THE LARGE-SCALE EXHIBITION, which has visited nearly 80 cities since making its bovine-beautiful bow in Chicago in 1999, places to-scale cow sculptures around a town or city, along streets, in plazas, and such. People visit, take pictures, and bid on the animal artworks, all to raise funds for a host of charities. It's a special thing to spy the cows, since they're not everywhere all the time, and have made several excursions overseas. But the Golden State, which is home to many a real cow, is in luck, for next up on the CowParade schedule is...

SAN LUIS OBISPO COUNTY: The fiberglass, fantastical cows'll soon be on view in the Central Coast region, and hopping onto the trail of where exactly you can see what cow is as easy as visiting the CowParade SLO's online HQ. But first you'll need the dates, and they're impressively expansive: The cows'll keep close to California for over a half year, from Sept. 27, 2016 through the end of April 2017. After that, a charity auction will send the sweet and sizable pieces off to their new homes. Ready to get your moo on in Paso Robles, the 5 Cities, and SLO itself? Swish your tail this way.

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