People of various states of mind, from the brave to the weird to the just plain drunk, gather at the Starboard in Dewey Beach, DE, to run with the Bull. Dressed in the traditional Pamplona white clothing and red bandanas (and the less traditional bikini tops, kilts, clown wigs, and whatever they feel like), the bull runners meet at the Starboard in the early morning hours (which run from 11 AM to 1:30 PM in Dewey) on the appointed day, where they enjoy beverages, loud music, and general pre-run festivities (like the meeting and greeting of the Bull, but mostly just beverages and loud music). At 2 PM, the Run officially begins.
The bull runners exit the Starboard and, after a brief pep rally / orientation session in the parking lot, the crowd crosses Highway 1 and walks leisurely north- followed by the Bull- making its way to Houston Street, walk the one block to the ocean and congregate at the edge of the water.
With much fanfare, the Bull descends from the dunes onto the beach. At the marshal’s signal, the Bull is set loose and the crowd begins to run, jog, or- in many cases- stumble, heading south down the water’s edge. The Bull pursues the crowd at about the same pace, occasionally stopping for photo ops with children. The running is cheered on by spectators on both land and sea.
After about eight to ten blocks of “running” (maybe ten minutes), the bull runners and Bull exit the beach. Walking back up Highway 1 to the Starboard, the runners gather in the parking lot and await the arrival of the Bull and matador for the annual bullfight. Meanwhile, by tradition, the Bull and some of his handlers make a pass through Gary’s Dewey Beach Grill, located across the street, for the annual ceremonial Funneling of the Beer.
Finally, the annual bullfight is held in the parking lot of the Starboard, and either the matador or Bull is slain (though not really), and often such characters as the Phatador, Batador, and Bratador, as well as mermaids, sharks, flamenco dancers, and lifeguards can be found participating in the ritualistic silliness.
The crowd then retires to the bar for more beverages and loud music.
PLEASE NOTE THAT THE BULL IS ONLY TWO PEOPLE IN A BULL COSTUME. Despite the fact that this precaution was implemented to insure safety, the Running has recently drawn protests from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animal Costumes, or PETAC (pronounced PEE-tak), whose placards insist that “This Run is Bull”, “Garrett is Murder” and “Chicks Dig Protestors”. Despite these allegations, their efforts to prevent the Running, coupled with their seemingly contradictory participation in it, have proven ineffectual in dissuading runners.