23rd Annual Trailing of the Sheep Festival takes place in Sun Valley

KETCHUM, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) This weekend is the 23rd annual Trailing of the Sheep festival where people from all over the world come to Sun Valley to learn about the trailing of the sheep. Last year they had people from 49 states and 15 countries.

The 23rd annual Trailing of the Sheep Festival is taking place this weekend in Sun Valley.

"The sheep dog trials started today and run through Sunday, and the folk life fair is tomorrow in Hailey and then the big sheep dog parade and closing party is on Sunday in Ketchum," said Laura Masbuch Drake, the executive director of the festival.

It all started 23 years ago, and has grown into one of the top fall festivals in the country.

"We are really fortunate and privileged to be on a lot of lists on top ten festivals, and top ten fall festivals, and top ten things to do in the fall, so we are really fortunate to be a festival that attracts that kind of attention," Masbuch Drake said.

As you watch 15,000 sheep parading down Main Street, don’t forget the real meaning behind the festival.

"Sheep have been around here for hundreds of years, most of the ranchers use private land, and public land to migrate their sheep. In the spring they go North to migrate in the mountains, and right now in the fall they are migrating South, which is why our festival is this time of year because we are celebrating the sheep’s migration south for winter grazing," Masbuch Drake said.

It’s a festival for the whole family, but it’s best to leave your dog at home.

"We definitely ask that you keep your dogs at home for the parade, because the guard dog’s job is to guard the sheep, so they might see any dog as a threat. Even if your dog is very friendly it’s for their safety that we ask you keep them at home during the parade," Masbuch Drake said.

The festival is all weekend long in Hailey and Sun Valley.

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