San Diego

Hundreds of Cattle Parade Through Downtown San Diego

The cattle drive was a way to get locals excited about the opening of the 2017 San Diego County Fair; the theme this season is all about cowboys and the wild west

"Moo-ve" over, San Diego – cattle comin' through!

In a rare event, at least for San Diego, 200 cattle paraded through downtown's Gaslamp Quarter Saturday. Why, you ask? 

The cattle drive was held to promote the opening weekend of the 2017 San Diego County Fair. This year, the theme of the fair is "Where the West is Fun," a nod to all things cowboy and the wild west.

The four-legged herd took its place at 7:30 a.m. at Ruocco Park. Led by 45 cowboys riding horses and eight dogs, they headed down Harbor Drive then up Fifth Avenue. Then, they marched down Market Street and made a lap back up to Harbor Drive.

The cattle drive also helped celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Gaslamp Quarter.

Jeremy Gorman, a rider who kept up with the cattle, said he was excited to participate in this unusual, once-in-a-lifetime event.

“It takes a lot of support from the riders and the dogs to do this,” Gorman told NBC 7. “If something takes off, [the dogs and riders] put them straight back to the herd.”

Locals gathered, in awe, to watch the procession, including Gary Coumbe and his family who couldn’t believe that they were seeing.

“It was really cool to see the cows running around and the cowboys chasing them down,” he said.

Ingrid Sanchez, who hails from Germany, is no stranger to cattle. But, seeing them in the streets of downtown San Diego was pretty surprising for her. She loved it.

“These cows know how to behave. It was a beautiful event and safe for everyone,” Sanchez said. “I just came back from Germany and went to the Alps. I watched big milk cows, so it’s nice to see these kinds of cows now.”

In a rare sight - at least for San Diego, in 2017 - cowboys mounted their horses and drove some cattle through the streets of downtown on Saturday. The cattle drive was all to promote the start of the San Diego County Fair; the theme this year is "Where the West is Fun."

The San Diego County Fair opened Friday night and runs through July 4 at the Del Mar Fairgrounds. Check out our deals guide on how to save money a the fair this year. Also, here are some tips on what to eat at the fair (the fried, the weird and the tasty), and which bands will be headlining at the fair.

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