Cal Poly to Sponsor Five Entries in San Luis Obispo’s CowParade Public Art Display

Sept. 12, 2016

Contact: AnnMarie Cornejo

SAN LUIS OBISPO — Cal Poly is joining San Luis Obispo County’s largest public art display and charity benefit with five cows uniquely designed to highlight the Cal Poly legacy of Learn by Doing.

CowParade San Luis Obispo County will feature 101 life-sized cow statues, each decorated by sponsored artists. On Sept. 17, the cows will be herded to a meadow at Madonna Inn for public viewing. After that, the cows will be moved to different parts of the county, where the public art installations will remain for seven months. 

The Cal Poly and College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences (CAFES) cows are:

- Cal Poly Moostang: Cal Poly’s official cow, designed and painted by art and design students Kristen Meadows, Kyleigh Metzger and Cody Mindling, inspired by Cal Poly’s mustang mascot, Chase.
- SLO COWnty Brands: College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences’ cow brings to life San Luis Obispo County’s iconic cattle brands, including the college’s own Bar P. In true Learn by Doing fashion, fourth-year agricultural communications student Annierose Seifert designed and painted the cow to reflect her interpretation of Western and agricultural lifestyles.
- See Cow Do: The Experience Industry Management (formerly the Recreation, Parks and Tourism) Department’s cow, painted by area artist Deprise Brescia, reflects California’s iconic travel destinations and brings to life Cal Poly’s Learn by Doing mission, as well as the department’s tagline, Live | Protect | Explore.
- Legends of Cow Poly: Cal Poly’s esteemed Learn by Doing dairy science program has graduated generations of California dairy industry leaders. The artist pays homage to the hands-on learning principal that contributed to their success.
- Micow Distillery: Designed by sculptor Bouba Boumaiz and sponsored by a College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences class of 2020 parent, this cow is a well-riveted and well-grounded cow that uses methane to fuel an internal steam engine. The cow highlights CAFES’ fermentation sciences program, currently under development.

The Cal Poly herd will be on display at various locations on campus from October 2016 to May 2017. Several of the cows will then be auctioned off, with the money donated to specific Cal Poly departments and programs.

CowParade SLO County organizers anticipate more than 200,000 tourists and locals will view the exhibition, which will run through April 2017. In May 2017, the cows will be auctioned at a gala. Proceeds will benefit The Land Conservancy of San Luis Obispo County, ARTS Obispo, California Mid-State Fair Heritage Foundation, and selected sponsor charities.

About CowParade SLO County
CowParade SLO County is the county’s largest public art display, with proceeds benefiting local charities. Since the initial CowParade launched in Chicago in 1999, CowParade Holdings Corp., which owns the brand, has featured the event in 79 cities worldwide, including metropolitan destinations such as Tokyo, Paris, New York City, and London. For more details, visit

About Cal Poly’s College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences
Cal Poly is a nationally ranked, comprehensive polytechnic university. The university’s College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences is comprised of expert faculty members who take pride in their ability to transform academically motivated students into innovative professionals ready to solve the complex challenges associated with feeding the world in sustainable ways. Students have access to state-of-the-art laboratories, including ranch land, orchards, vineyards and forests, all of which provide the basis for Cal Poly’s Learn by Doing methodology. It is the fifth-largest college of agriculture in the country, with 4,000 undergraduate students.

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