Swiss cow parades
Each fall in various towns throughout Switzerland, cows are dressed with flowers, ribbons, flags and other fancy regalia as they are herded down from their mountain pastures and paraded back to their homes in a show of respect for their work. Herdsmen sometimes also dress in traditional garb and the villagers line up and cheer as they watch the colorful spectacle and the melodious ring of the cow bells. Called Alpabzugs, Alpabfahrts, Alp Processions or Cow Parades, the annual celebrations are often accompanied by festivals, folk singing and dancing, and dairy and produce markets. Similar parades are also held in various towns throughout Austria and Germany.