Manitou Emma Crawford Coffin Races

Oct 24 Brings Return of the Spooky Manitou Event

Riley Burgess, Staff Writer

Emma Crawford Coffin Races

Presented by Manitou Springs Chamber of Commerce, Visitor’s Bureau & Office of Economic Development at Downtown Manitou Springs

In the early 1900s, most of the population of Manitou were people with tuberculosis because it was believed that the mountain air there was cleansing. Emma Crawford was one of those people. During her time in Manitou she fell in love with the mountains of Colorado, so near her death she requested to be buried at the top of a mountain. Years later there was a major storm that caused mud slides and Crawford’s coffin was swept up and it flew down the mountain into town. To this day no one knows were Crawford’s body is but her famous coffin started the Emma Crawford Coffin Races.

This Oct. 24 marks the 21st running of the annual Coffin Races in downtown Manitou Springs where thousands of people gather to see teams race to the finish line for a chance at the Best Emma, Best Entourage, and Best Coffin awards. The event is completely free to the public and awards are given out at 2:00 PM followed by the after event activities.