There are some pretty strange events and festivals held all over the world and it’s getting more and more difficult to select which one’s the oddest. However, the week-long, annual World Cow Chip Throwing Championships in Beaver County, Oklahoma must be near the top of the list.
This year’s event takes place between April 9th and 16th and it features contestants throwing dried-up cow dung as far as they can to see who can throw it the furthest and be crowned champion of their specific division.
This crazy sport has been going on since back in 1970 and it attracts thousands of visitors from across America and further.
There are rules to the cow-dung throw which state the chips have to be at least half a foot in diameter and must be chosen from the festival’s official dung truck. You can’t tamper with them in any way. If the chip falls apart after it’s been thrown, the farthest piece is still counted.
The festival has plenty of other activities to keep visitors busy as it offers chili cook-offs, stock-car racing, arts and crafts shows, carnivals, a parade marshal and parade queen, and an ATV rodeo among other things.
The cow chips themselves have been used in the Great Plains area for well over 100 years. Buffalo hunters found that dried chips could be burned as fuel for cooking and heat as they were odorless and emitted clear bright flames, intense heat and didn’t leave any soot. The chips were often gathered and then traded for food and other things.
As the early settlers gathered the chips, it suddenly became natural to see who could throw them the furthest and most accurately into the wagon. The event became a sporting contest in the Beaver County region in 1970. There are women’s and men’s teams and the event’s winners are selected by judge.