Harmilda leads the Milk Day mooovement.

Harmilda the Cow, Milk Day Festival

Field review by the editors.

Harvard, Illinois

Though this life-sized, standard bovine statue is not as huge as other civic cows, the citizens of Harvard, Illinois, near the Wisconsin border, harbor strong feelings about their mascot. Harmilda the Cow has been the symbol of Harvard's annual Milk Day (Har-Mil-Da, get it?) since 1966.

In 1991, a plan to uproot the fiberglass statue from the busy downtown intersection sparked a protest by townspeople and children carrying signs that read "Don't Mooove Harmilda." She stayed put, at least for a few years. She's been moved a few feet, and sits at the "y" intersection of two downtown streets.

Harmilda the cow.

A mural of cows in a farm pasture serves as a pastoral background, but don't be lulled. A few errant steps backward from the statue and you might meet one of the locals up close, perhaps through a windshield.

The plaque underneath Harmilda still touts Harvard's civic claim, "The Milk Center of the World."

Milk Days is the longest running annual festival (now a multi-day event) in Illinois, according to the Milk Days web site. The town crowns a fresh Milk Day Queen every year.

Also see: Cowlossus of Roads

Harmilda the Cow, Milk Day Festival

Five Point Park

Address:
Ayer St., Harvard, IL
Directions:
Five Point Park. At the junction of US Hwy 14, Hwy 173, and Ayer St. The Festival is held in Milky Way Park, 300 Lawrence Rd.
Hours:
Milk Days: first weekend in June. (Call to verify) Local health policies may affect hours and access.
Phone:
815-943-4614
Save to My Sights

Nearby Offbeat Places

Ravenstone Castle Bed & BreakfastRavenstone Castle Bed & Breakfast, Harvard, IL - 2 mi.
Shoe TreeShoe Tree, Woodstock, IL - 6 mi.
Frog of FontanaFrog of Fontana, Fontana-on-Geneva Lake, WI - 9 mi.
In the region:
Octagon House, Watertown, WI - 53 mi.

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