ROBERT PIERCE • Leader & Times
Since 1950, International Pancake Day has been a friendly competition between Liberal and Olney, England, to see who can run their race course faster.
In Liberal, the event has evolved into four days of fun, and typically, a part of the flapjack festivities is the Pancake Day Talent Show. This year, however, that activity will not be part of the fun, but it has been replaced with something members of the Pancake Day board and the Liberal Area Coalition for Families believe will be just as fun.
The organizations have teamed up to present the Pancake Day Carnival from 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 23, at the Seward County Activity Center. LACF Director Sarah Foreman said the event will have a Mardi Gras feel to it.
“We’ll have some special treats to hand out for kids,” she said. “The event is $1 admission per person, similar to the United Way trick-or-treating event that’s in the mall for a number of years, and those proceeds will go to help Pancake Day activities in the future. It’s a very family friendly event.”
With no talent show for this year’s Pancake Day, Foreman said talent will still be showcased at the carnival, with choirs from Hugoton, Sublette and Liberal coming to perform.
“We’re just asking for folks to come out to do some games and activities with us and to get the community involved and for people to come out and support those choirs,” she said.
While she was not sure how the event evolved on the Pancake board’s side, she did say members of that board approached coalition members in an effort to put the carnival together.
“They just said, ‘We’re trying some new things. Would this interest the coalition?’” she said. “I talked to my staff, and everyone thought it was a good idea and we’re just kind of running with it.”
Foreman said following flipping and eating contests and the Pancake Chase on Saturday, Feb. 22, the carnival will be a great way to keep the four days of fun going.
“It’ll be a great kickoff to get the work started,” she said. “There’s some events on Saturday. This continues with the fun of the weekend.”
With this being the first of what hopefully will be more editions of the Pancake Day Carnival, Foreman has somewhat high expectations for the event.
“We’re hoping it’s a fun time for families to play games together and do some different activities,” she said. “Organizations are welcome to hand out literature or promotional materials for what they do, but really, the point is just some physical activity for families. There’ll be games at all the stations. We’ll have a blowup soccer guard game. We’ll have a soccer pool game, just some different fun things that maybe haven’t been at other events.”