Don’t (Cake)Walk This Way: The Sordid Details of Golden’s New First Friday

I had a complicated relationship with cakewalks as a kid.

Meaning: I always wanted to win and yet never did.

My family had a glorious staycation in Golden, Colorado last weekend. My trip report and oodles of great giveaways are forthcoming but what cannot wait is my daughter Hurricane Hadley’s introduction to The (Cake)Walk of Doom.

Which is only moderately less death-defying than walking the plank.

I have spent a lot of time in this idyllic town that is nestled between two volcanic mesas and against the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. We stayed at the Golden Hotel overlooking the main drag and gurgling Clear Creek.

On Friday night, we attended the city’s “First Friday,” a newly-minted street fair that occurs on the first Friday of each month. We dined on delicious buffalo burgers from a vendor, watched a magic show, danced in the streets to a live band, indulged in Golden Sweets Ice Cream & Chocolate, rode in a free horse-drawn carriage and topped off our evening at Windy Saddle Cafe where they held a Cupcake Walk for the children.

Twenty-six kids crammed into a circle and each child was given a number to tape to the ground. Like most cakewalks, when the music stops and your number is called out, you’re a winner. But unlike most cakewalks, they had enough cupcakes for everyone; the child just needed to be patient enough to stick around to the end.

Hurricane Hadley lacks patience.

And yes, she gets it Trying to get a group of small children to walk around in a circle is like trying to herd a gaggle of geese. Though they were uncooperative at best, one by one they dropped off as their numbers were called. Halfway through, a vacant number next to Bode was announced. I swiftly plopped him on it and he jubilantly went to claim his reward.

All that remained was Hadley…and about 15 other kids. With each number, her frustration grew. She tried many different methods.

1) The Only Moving When You Were Assured a Number to Step On Method

2) The Take The Number With You Method, which is most effective by subtly dragging it with your foot.

3) The Screaming “GO!” Method

4) And finally, The Dejected “I’m Never Going to Win” Method.

It came down to the very end. There was one number left and she was up against just one boy who was half her size.

“She’s gonna take your son down,” I warned his parents.

I was only halfway joking.

The previous rounds were out of her control but a race to the finish? The Hurricane did not disappoint. When that number was called, come hell or highwater chocolate cupcake with swirly frosting, she was not going to lose this competition. She jubilantly plopped down on that number, did an I am the Champion-esque dance and went to claim her chocolate prize.

All was right in the world until she learned that the little boy who came in very last got to do a special dance and then get his cupcake.

Chocolate and performing in front of adoring throngs of people?

Taking second-to-last place is the new Biggest Loser.

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