- Title: Cow dung flies at wacky Wisconsin festival
- Date: 3rd September 2017
- Summary: PRAIRIE DU SAC, WISCONSIN, UNITED STATES (SEPTEMBER 2, 2017) (REUTERS) COW CHIPS BEING DRIVEN INTO FIELD TIGHT SHOT OF COW CHIPS IN TRAILER MALE CONTESTANTS WAITING IN LINE TO THROW TIGHT SHOT TEE-SHIRT READING (English): "WISCONSIN STATE - 58 - COW CHIP THROW" TIGHT SHOT MALE CONTESTANTS HOLDING COW CHIPS MALE CONTESTANT THROWING COW CHIP AUDIENCE WATCHING MALE CONTESTANT THROW COW CHIP (SOUNDBITE) (English) EVENT ORGANIZER, JEREMY PINGS, SAYING: "Some people are really grossed out by the idea of throwing cow chips, but some people take it really seriously. Some people dress-up, and there is a 'best dressed' award that goes out. Some people even lick their fingers to get better traction on the chip when they throw it." MALE CONTESTANT LICKING FINGERS TIGHT SHOT MALE CONTESTANT THROWING COW CHIP VARIOUS OF WISCONSIN STATE COW CHIP THROW SIGN PARENT HELPING CHILD CONTESTANT SELECT COW CHIP FROM BIN CHILD CONTESTANTS WAITING IN LINE HOLDING COW CHIPS CHILD CONTESTANT THROWING COW CHIP (SOUNDBITE) (English) FESTIVAL ATTENDEE FROM MILWAUKEE, JAMES STEENO, SAYING: "We thought it was pretty funny. You know, it's just one of those things that just no one else is doing it, so let's go do something that's weird, you know?" TIGHT SHOT CHILD CONTESTANT'S FEET AS HE THROWS COW CHIP VARIOUS OF FEMALE TEAM WAITING BEHIND PILE OF COW CHIPS VARIOUS OF FEMALE CONTESTANTS THROWING COW CHIPS WIDE SHOT GAZEBO SELLING COW CHIP FESTIVAL PARAPHERNALIA (SOUNDBITE) (English) EVENT ORGANIZER, MARIETTA REUTER, SAYING: "They're actually beef cattle that we get them from, but they're all pasture-fed. So it's all grasses they eat, and they need that for the high fiber to make the thicker, denser chip. So those are the best chips, and we usually pick them up about a month before our festival, put them on a wagon. They go in a barn at night, come out in the sun during the day, and they get flipped periodically during the month to cure them and get them ready for our festival." CONTESTANTS FROM LOS ANGELES DOING STRETCHES BEFORE THROW (SOUNDBITE) (English) CONTESTANT FROM LOS ANGELES, IRENE YUEN, SAYING: "We are actually here for Mandy's bachelorette. She's getting married in a couple months, so we decided to have a trip and she actually planned all of this. She did a lot of research on Wisconsin - we're actually staying in Madison - so that and surrounding areas. And she found out about this and we're going to throw some cow chips." VARIOUS OF CONTESTANTS FROM LOS ANGELES SELECTING COW CHIPS FROM TRAILER CONTESTANT FROM LOS ANGELES, MANDY MA, THROWING COW CHIP AUDIENCE WATCHING CONTESTANT FROM LOS ANGELES, HELENA LEVIN, THROWING COW CHIP MALE CONTESTANT DOING STRETCHES BEFORE CONTEST (SOUNDBITE) (English) CONTESTANT FROM MADISON, GREG LIVINGSTON, SAYING: "I walked the field a little bit; we got here a little bit early, walked up and down the field. I've been doing a bunch of shoulder stretches, just trying to get loosened up, get back to the old 'Little League' days of throwing baseballs." CONTESTANT THROWING COW CHIP AUDIENCE WATCHING VIEW DOWN FIELD AS COW CHIP FLIES THROW AIR REFEREES WALKING TO MEASURE DISTANCE OF COW CHIP TIGHT SHOT REFEREE PICKING UP COW CHIP FROM FIELD VARIOUS OF MALE CONTESTANTS WAITING IN LINE HOLDING COW CHIPS BOARD SHOWING TOP MALE AND FEMALE CONTESTANTS MALE CONTESTANTS RIFLING THROUGH COW CHIP PILE
- Embargoed: 17th September 2017 18:41
- Keywords: Wisconsin Cow Chip Throw cow dung cow chip Wisconsin festival
- Location: PRAIRIE DU SAC, WISCONSIN, UNITED STATES
- City: PRAIRIE DU SAC, WISCONSIN, UNITED STATES
- Country: USA
- Topics: Human Interest / Brights / Odd News,Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA0016X1KYG5
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Discs of dried cow dung flew through the air at Wisconsin's annual Cow Chip Throw in Prairie du Sac on Saturday (September 2), as contestants young and old competed for the top prize.
"Some people are really grossed out by the idea of throwing cow chips, but some people take it really seriously," said event organizer, Jeremy Pings.
The chips come from cows at a local farm, where they are laid out in the sun about a month in advance.
"They're all pasture-fed, so it's all grasses they eat, and they need that for the high fiber to make the thicker, denser chip," explained Marietta Reuter, who has been on the festival committee for nearly three decades.
The most durable chips are stored and reused, she added.
This year the competition, now in its 43rd year, attracted contestants from around the United States and as far afield as the Netherlands and Portugal.
Bride-to-be Mandy Ma from Los Angeles even chose the attraction as part of her bachelorette festivities.
While she and her bridal party were not particularly successful at throwing the chips far, they earned a lot of recognition for their creative, cow-themed outfits.
Contest rules stipulate that the cow chips must be at least six inches (15 cm) in diameter to qualify. If a chip breaks mid-throw, the piece that flew farthest is the one that is counted. No gloves are allowed, but contestants may lick their fingers to get a better grip, according to the festival website. The state record is currently 248 feet (76 meters).
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