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July 13, 2000
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The Calgary Sun -- It was the biggest escape attempt in Calgary Stampede history -- more than a dozen cows made a break for freedom right under the noses of their handlers. "Some of them gave us quite a chase," said Dan Sullivan, of the Stampede. The cows were being loaded off a truck to a Stampede barn about 5 a.m. yesterday when -- without warning -- 14 of them bolted. "They were very organized, it's like they had a plan," Sullivan laughed. Ten of the brash bovines were quickly corralled, but four decided to hoof it downtown to see the sights. "We caught up to them -- and they were big, about 1,000 lb. each -- in the Lindsay Park/Mission Hill area about 8 a.m.," said Calgary police Insp. Bill Webb. "Four police officers -- using their patrol cars like quarter horses -- herded them and pinned them," he said. The cops, who suddenly learned they were cowboys, steered the freedom- craving cows to a laneway and held them until Stampede staff came to take them back to the barn. "It was a joint forces operation," Webb said. Despite the mini-stampede, there were no injuries or damage done, Sullivan said. "There were no mishaps, they just went on a joyride," he said. "Maybe they were trying to blend in with the Udderly Art (cow statues) downtown?" The animals were on the grounds being used in the cattle-penning event.

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