Mambo for Mardi Gras at Manitou's Mumbo Jumbo Gumbo


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Every year, Manitou Springs incorporates a little Southern anarchy into its culture stew resulting in the Mumbo Jumbo Gumbo Cook-Off in Soda Springs Park, followed by the the Carnivale Parade. This year, it's going down around 11 a.m. on Saturday, March 1.

"Up to 18 teams will compete for the honor of making the 'Best Gumbo' in both amateur and professional divisions," says a press release from the town's visitors bureau. "Samples of the gumbo will be sold 2 for $1.00. The public is invited to cast their vote for 'The People's Choice' award. This year we will have several teams returning to defend previous titles as well as new participants, bringing their Louisiana expertise and entering for the first time."

If you've never been to the event, now in its 22nd year, you can expect a wide range of styles, garnishes — whole crawfish have been known to dangle bowl-side — and enthusiasm for black pepper.

Paired with the parade, the events are designed "to not only bring the feel of Mardi Gras to Manitou Springs but also allow everyone the opportunity to enjoy the flavor of Mardi Gras."

In that spirit, here are the last two verses from Rolfe Humphries' "A Song for Mardi Gras":
I have loved loving you,
O my linnet, O my dove.
God have mercy on a sinner!
Fare thee well and absent, love,
Moon and star must go to waste —
Till Easter Monday all are chaste.

I have loved loving you,
O my green, O my shadow,
In the ambush set between
Mountainside, moor, and meadow.
March, be gone; April, haste —
Till Easter Monday all are chaste.


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