So one of my goals when I arrived here was to try new things I hadn't ever had the opportunity to try when I was young. So far I've accomplished quite a bit along with some of my closest friends. We have taken the cog railway up to Pikes Peak, we have explored the Cave of the Winds and the Manitou Cliff Dwellings, we hiked Seven Falls, hung out with some wolves, went to the hot air balloon festival and so much more. One of the things I have wanted to experience for a few years now is the Emma Crawford Coffin Races in Manitou Springs.
If you've never been to Manitou Springs, CO, I highly recommend you check it out. It's one of the best parts of this area. The shops are amazing (and a couple are owned by some of my friends), the people are friendly (and maybe a little "high" on life) and the overall tone of the town is relaxing. Not to mention the view is incredible. However, one of Manitou's big claims to fame is many areas of the small town are said to be haunted. This can make for a fun experience around Halloween, as I am sure you can imagine. One of it's best stories is the Legend of Emma Crawford.
See Emma had Tuberculosis. So she moved to Manitou Springs in hopes that the thin, clean air and the natural mineral springs there would help her to heal. For awhile it seemed to work and she started to live a relatively normal life. She even got engaged to a man named William Hildebrand. Emma was a sassy lass and she insisted on trying things that would stretch the limits of her TB. One of the things she accomplished was hiking up Red Mountain. When she got up there she declared that was where she wanted to be buried when the time came. Sadly, she died before her and William could be married. William was determined to give her that burial so he gathered a dozen men and they buried her up on Red Mountain.
However, during a severe storm, the land where she was buried began to wash away. Emma's coffin slid down the mountain and into the town of Manitou. Shocking the people of Manitou Springs. Now, her coffin rests peacefully in the Crystal Valley Cemetery ever since (and luckily she has stayed put). But it is said she still haunts the area.
So in celebration of Emma's descent down the mountain, every year the town of Manitou celebrates Emma with the coffin races. A full day of costumes, craziness and fun. The races are pretty amazing. 50 teams of four runners and one "Emma" (the rider) build and design their coffins and then parade them down main street before the race begins. The race consists of sets of with two teams at a time and the best time at the end of the day wins. The whole town comes together (along with people from all over) to gather together to listen to live music, dress in costumes, check out the races, shop and eat and enjoy life.
Here are some pictures that I caught of that awesome day! I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed being there with my pals.
(BTW - this is my friends entry! I loved it)
GO LOUIS & LAURA!!!!
Maybe I'm biased but I think "The Flintstoners" were the cutest!