Flying Fruitcakes Get Wings Clipped

Try some alternative fruit desserts so you won’t have to toss your fruitcake.

Orange Pound Cake
Orange Pound Cake

By Colleen Walsh Fong


If you’re heading to Manitou Springs, Colorado for the annual Great Fruitcake Toss you may want to rearrange your agenda. The Toss has been cancelled!


January 3rd is National Fruitcake Toss Day and the annual Manitou Springs Toss commemorated the day with a contest to see who could toss an unwanted fruitcake the furthest. Originally held in the local Memorial Park where tossing was done by human hands it drew up to 1,000 people at its peak. But serious contestants began using mechanical devices that launched cakes so far they hit houses and commercial buildings, so the event was moved to the Manitou Springs High School athletic fields. After the move attendance began to drop. But during it’s hey day a record throw of 415 feet was made by hand! I guess that contestant was determined his cake wasn’t coming back home. The contest’s record toss for a cake launched by mechanical means is 1,420 feet.


Fruitcakes have been the butt of jokes for decades and are considered by Americans to be one of the least wanted and most re-gifted Christmas presents. They are usually made of dense spice cake and loaded with dried fruits and nuts, making a stiff and sturdy cake that could do serious damage to any launching target. So, be sure to duck if you see one flying your way. European fruitcakes are often soaked in alcohol which serves as a preservative making the “Oh no, it’s gone bad,” excuse unusable. American cakes are usually alcohol free leaving us that convenient out should we be unable or unwilling to reroute our cakes to another home.


If you’re not a traditional fruit cake fan, but like the idea of pairing cake and fruit, take a look at the quick and easy fruity desserts in our EWM touchscreen cookbooks for busy people. My favorite is the Peach Kuchen because it’s rich and feels light at the same time. But our strawberry-topped Orange Pound Cake and our Tangy Blueberry Pie make fruit desserts an airier affair than fruitcake.


Happy National Fruitcake Toss Day!


Photos Courtesy of Easy Weekly Meals

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