PHILADELPHIA — A cow in Philadelphia apparently wanted to be away from the manger, as it escaped twice Thursday morning from a church’s live nativity scene.
Stormy, a 7-year-old brown and white Hereford, was back munching hay at Old First Reformed Church of Christ by 7:15 a.m. after two sets of adventures on snowy downtown streets. Later on Thursday, church officials decided to use Stormy’s understudy, Ginger, in the nativity scene.
Police first got reports of a cow near an Interstate 95 on-ramp around 2 a.m. Thursday.
One of the state police troopers who responded has a cattle ranch in New Jersey and knew how to handle the situation, WPVI-TV reports . Officers put a lead rope on the cow and walked her to a nearby parking lot with police vehicles helping shepherd Stormy back to church. Some lanes of the highway had to be shut down as the cow was wrangled.
But for Stormy, all was not calm and bright. She fled again around 6 a.m., despite Rev. Michael Caine’s best efforts to stop the 1,500-pound animal. She then ambled toward a major thoroughfare as the morning rush got under way.
“If you’re in the area of 4th and Market, beware of traffic delays. A cow is loose. Again. No, we can’t believe we are tweeting this either,” the police department tweeted just before 7 a.m.
This time, the bovine was tracked down on the fourth floor of a parking garage about a block south of the church.
By late morning, Stormy was loaded into a trailer to head back to the Manatawna Saul Farm, which is a high school 4-H club that owns her.
Scott Moser, who helps the students with the animals, told The Associated Press because Stormy figured out how to push open the gate — despite its beefed up latch system — it seems to have become a bit of a game for her.
They decided to use her understudy, a cow about half her size named Ginger.
As for Stormy, Moser said she has never been a troublemaker before.
“She’s a very calm cow,” he said. “Nothing really fazes her.”
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