Celebrating 25 years

Emma Crawford
Coffin Races and Festival

In memory of emma crawford

The tradition continues

In 1995, the Manitou Springs Chamber of Commerce started the first coffin races in the nation, in memory of a beloved member of Manitou Springs. In the years since, the races have grown into an often-copied-but-never-equaled Manitou Springs tradition.

be part of the race

Register to race

Racers start your engines… er, coffins! If you are ready to run for guts and glory, sign up below! You need 4 pushers and 1 emma (riding in the coffin). This is the 25th year of the running of the coffin races…get your registration form and your $75 fee in early!

Know your history

Emma Crawford came to Manitou Springs in 1889 searching for a cure for her tuberculosis in the the area’s famed cold-water mineral springs. She fell in love with the charming mountain town and her dying wish was to be buried on top of Red Mountain. Unfortunately, Emma succumbed to her illness in 1891. Her lover, a civil engineer on the Pikes Peak Cog Railway named William Hildebrand, honored her wishes. With the help of eleven other townspeople, William carried Emma’s coffin up the 7,200 foot slope and buried her near the summit of Red Mountain.

In 1929, after years of harsh winters and spring rains, Emma and her coffin came racing down the mountainside. The young children who happened upon her remains found only the casket handles, a nameplate, and a few bones.

New Family tradition!

5/5

This event was AMAZING!!!! I’ve discovered our new annual family tradition!!! — Angel H.

Best Halloween Activity!

5/5

If you have not been to the Coffin Races you should go and check it out. It is a hoot. One of the best Halloween activities of the year! —Keith J.

Plan ahead, be prepared!

5/5

…Folks it’s awesome! It’s an adorable tiny town with a Mardi Gras-esque event that is worth it all! Plan ahead and be prepared! We stayed just up the road in Cascade, took a Lyft down for a whole $7.00 and had a blast! — Daisy M.

Yay for free shuttles!

5/5

This was our first year going. It was so cool! I am so glad we read up on the event prior to going! Took advantage of the shuttle system and had no issues arriving or leaving. The online pamphlet was helpful to know where events were taking place and they also provided one coming off the shuttle. Great job, great event! — Donna D.B.

you've got questions. We've got answers.

Coffin Races FAQ

How do you choose the t-shirt design?

T-shirt designs voted on by the community. Anyone can vote in person at the chamber of commerce 354 Manitou Ave. 80829.

Where do I catch the free shuttle to town for the races?

There will be multiple free shuttles running from Rock Ledge Ranch to Manitou Springs on race day.  Shuttles run from 9 am-6 pm. We suggest getting an early start to get the best spot on the side line. 

Is there handicap parking and seating at the races?

Yes! Call the chamber of commerce for the this year’s location for handicap parking. Handicap seating is located on both sides of the finish line, near the VIP seats. 

How much does it cost to attend the coffin races?

It’s free to watch the races and march in the parade.  Racing teams must pay a $75 entry fee to race.

Can I bring my dog?

We highly recommend four-legged friends stay home. The streets are very crowded and not a pleasant environment for pets. In addition,  only service dogs are allowed on the shuttles, not pets.

How do I purchase the VIP seats?

VIP tickets are not yet for sale for 2019

How do I… sign up to race? or play at the after party? or attend as a vendor?

Sign up to race here. We accept applications from bands to entertain race goers at the after party and inquires from businesses interested in sponsoring the races. Fill out the corresponding form and someone will get back to you.

What time does the race start?

Parade starts at noon, followed immediately by the races.

Should I dress up?

You can dress up to be who/whatever you’d like. Think of it as a Halloween costume party with 10,000 of your closest friends!

the fun is deadly

Sponsor this event

Sponsoring coffin races is a great way to get your business name out to the thousands of spectators that flock to town on race day. Fill out the sponsor request form and someone will be back with you soon!

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