The Great Bull Run, which mirrors one of Spain’s oldest, most dangerous traditions, the Running of the Bulls, will be taking place July 26 in California’s East Bay.
The Alameda County Fairgrounds will host the event, which will be preceded, just as does the traditional festival in Pamplona, Spain, by a giant tomato fight. The event has already drawn thousands of eager runners who have taken part in The Great Bull Run this year in Florida, Dallas, Texas, and Minnesota.
The Boston-based company is on a nationwide tour. Participants throughout the United States pay ($60 for the event on the 26th) to run in front of a stampede of bulls and hopefully living to talk about it, according to CBS News’ San Francisco affiliate, KPIX.
Chicago hosted the run last Saturday.
But the event is not welcome by everyone. Two animal rights groups have filed lawsuits in an attempt to stop the controversial event from taking place, notes CBS. In May of this year, an attorney from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) called the event “a display of human idiocy.”
An attorney from the Animal Defense Fund told CBS that he believes the event to be a “bloodless bull fight.” Bullfighting is illegal in California, according to California Penal Code 597.
But the COO of The Great Bull Run and event organizer Rob Dickens called the lawsuit “frivolous” and insisted that no bulls are ever hurt in the run, contrary to what animal rights groups claim, notes KPIX. “We have two cowboys to follow behind to make sure that if a bull does stop or get turned around, they can lead it into the corral safely,” Dickens said.