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I’m Bringing Cake Walks Back



We had SO much fun at the Slow Food Asheville sponsored Cake Walk this past Sunday. Hubs even won a scrumptious cheesecake from Rachel’s Delectables. My mom and grandmother joined us at the event and Huxley showcased his best moves for the crowd (he’s crazy about dancing; I’m thinking some music and/or dance lessons are in his near future). Locals, I highly encourage you to get involved with Slow Food Asheville. The local chapter regularly hosts fabulous events that are just as informative and educational as they are festive and fun.

I think the cake walk is an absolutely genius concept. Originally employed by southern plantation slaves, the activity involved dance moves mocking the more formal ballroom style used by slave owners. Dancers would move in exaggerated steps and, at the end of the competition, whomever was deemed the silliest dancer was awarded a cake.

Today’s cake walks are more like musical chairs than their historical forebears. Dancers walk in a circle (although I typically dance my way along!) to a musical accompaniment. Along the circle are numbers, often written in chalk. When the music stops, dancers stand over the number they landed on. Whoever is orchestrating the cake walk then randomly draws a number and the dancer/walker standing over the chosen number is the winner and bestowed with a cake.  All of the cakes at Sunday’s event were locally made by Slow Food members or area businesses.

As much fun as these modern cake walks are, I want to bring back the cake walks of yore. I’d love to witness my nearest and dearest attempt to outdo one another with the wildest, wackiest dance moves they can conjure. I’ve got a number of gatherings planned over the next year (all work for my new book-stay tuned for more details!) and I’m thinking the cake walk will make a cameo or two.

At our cake walks, each attendee would bring some item to be given away to the winners. Ideally that would be a cake, but I know that not everyone feels their baking chops are prize-worthy. So, the prize could be a batch of their amazing brownies, or their stellar homemade granola, or even a 6-pack of local beer. We’d dance, we’d make fools of ourselves, and then we’d be awarded for it in the end.

Good plan, right?

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