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January 8, 2021

Manitou Springs Great Fruitcake Toss

Photos taken in 2019 and brought to you by I Love Manitou Springs

It’s hard to truly know when fruitcake became such a maligned baked good, but its reputation as the booby prize of the winter holidays has persisted for decades. Like candy corn on Halloween, folks either really, really love fruitcake and will fight you to the death to defend it — or think it should be tossed like the One Ring into the fiery pits of Mordor. If you’re of the latter group, the Manitou Springs Fruitcake Toss should be on your to-do list on Jan. 23, 2021. If the name wasn’t self-evident, we’ll lay it out: You get to throw fruitcake. Now, you won’t be tossing it as far as Mordor, but you also won’t be ruining the lives of any hobbits to get rid of it, either. We feel that’s still pretty cool. Here’s a look at the event.

What’s a Fruitcake?

Most people automatically think they hate it, but have probably never tasted it. The poor cake has been banished in most households. What makes a fruitcake a fruitcake? In addition to being a rather snarky term for your favorite eccentric aunt, fruitcakes are a dessert that go back to the days of the Romans. In modern America, your average fruitcake is a densely baked, moist, dark cake loaded with candied fruits, nuts and occasionally soaked with liquor. Most people feel that even alcohol can’t save the dreaded dessert, going so far as to say it’s abusive to the liquor. The flavor tends align more with sweets like zucchini bread or gingerbread with echoes of the alcohol (if added).

Limited $5 Fruitcakes for Sale or Bring Your Own Fruitcake

If you received a fruitcake over the holidays, we encourage you to bring it! If not, you can purchase a cake for a $5, including five tickets to throw to enter competitions for distance, balance, accuracy and more. There’s a couple of ways to toss (we recommend the three-man slingshot). Additional throws are available for $1 each, but entrants are encouraged to bring a non-perishable food item for the Manitou Springs Community Pantry. Each canned items equals one event ticket, with max of 10 tickets per family.  

The event runs from 1-3 p.m. on Jan. 23, 2021 in Memorial Park in Manitou Springs. As always when traveling to Manitou, it’s important to plan ahead for traffic, construction and parking. Arrive early and try to skirt the traffic by using Hwy. 24 and coming into Manitou past the construction. Don’t park in residential areas unless you want to pay a huge ticket or even be towed. That’s going to put a damper on the fun, for sure. As we mentioned above, tossing a cake will cost $1 and you should definitely bring a non-perishable item (or several) for the Manitou Springs Community Pantry.

Manitou Springs has been hosting this fling-festival for more than 25 years. Warm up your pitching arm, gather any spare cakes you have and head over to the park for fun founded in decades of tradition.

For more information, visit: manitousprings.org/events/fruitcake-toss/

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