Fruitcake, not just for eating (The 16th Annual Fruitcake Toss, Manitou Spring, Colorado)

FRUITCAKE 1) a rich cake containing nuts, dried or candied fruits and spices, 2) a crazy or eccentric person.

TOSS 1) to throw, pitch or fling.

Fruitcake Toss, Manitou Spring, Colorado (photo courtesy of Suzanne Barlow)

Love it or hate it, the fruitcake has become a staple of American culture and this Saturday, January    8, the small town of Manitou Springs, Colorado celebrates their 16th Annual Fruitcake Toss.

Manitou Springs is one of the Mayor’s favorite Colorado towns, in fact, it’s where she bought her favorite red hat. The word unique is overused, but Manitou Springs really is unique and it’s not surprising that the citizens of this  eclectic  town like to toss fruitcakes.

Here are  abbreviated  the rules for this annual event:

Participants must provide their own fruitcake, however, a limited number of rental fruitcakes are available for $1.  The fruitcake must be real and made from edible  ingredients. The fruitcakes will not be taste tested, however they will be inspected by the official “Fruitcake Toss Tech Inspectors.”

Individuals or teams can enter the following contests:

Kids Toss, no this doesn’t involve tossing an actual child. This is the competition where kids in three age groups can try their hand at tossing a fruitcake. Distance winners will be named in the three groups, one boy and one girl from each group.

The Fruitcake Toss is where an individuals throws a one 1 lb fruitcake. The person who tosses their fruitcake the farthest is the winner.  There is also a 2 lb fruitcake competition for those heavy weights out there.

The Fruitcake Launch – teams use a mechanical device to launch a fruitcake.

The Pneumatic Guns or Cannon – individual competitors use an approved pneumatic spud gun to shoot their fruitcake.

Winners in all the above competitions are determined by the distance their fruitcakes are tossed, launched and shot.

There are two more competitions, including one where individuals must catch a fruitcake launched by their mechanical device (baseball gloves are allowed), and another where teams launch their fruitcake and try to hit a specific target.


Info: The Fruitcake Toss is held at the Manitou Springs High School Track from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, January 8, 2011. Registration begins at 8 a.m. Find the Fruitcake Toss on Facebook here.

Tips: If you attend this event be sure to stick around afterwards and explore Manitou Springs. They boast a unique collection of shops, and restaurants, a beautiful historic district and a penny arcade that isn’t just for children. My husband and I once spent an entire afternoon playing games in the town’s extensive collection of retro arcade games.

Find the Town of Manitou Springs on Facebook here.


  1. Will there be any fruit cakes for sale to take home? I’m one of those rare individuals that loves fruit cake and buy one or two every year. Thanks.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *