Bigfoot believers gather at annual retreat

CHAUTAUQUA, N.Y. (AP) – Bigfoot believers have gathered in western New York and some insist the legendary Sasquatch’s footprint is getting bigger.

About a hundred people gathered at Saturday’s Chautauqua Lake Bigfoot Expo to swap stories and hear expert lectures. The event is being held at a campsite not far from the Chautauqua Institution, renowned for its annual summer lineup devoted to scholarly pursuits.

Founder Peter Wiemer says the expo started as a tourist draw, but he’s since met dozens of people who are certain they’ve seen Bigfoot in the area – far from the creature’s usual suspected range in the Pacific Northwest.

He’s now enough of a devotee that he’s tried to get New York to put Bigfoot on its list of endangered species.

The state’s response? There’s no need to protect a “mythical animal.”

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