Fruita Colorado Celebrates A Headless Chicken Every Year
Believe it or not, Fruita, Colo. celebrates a headless chicken every year. You have to see it to believe it.
No matter what town you visit, there is always a strange phenomenon they celebrate. Here in the Grand Valley, mainly Fruita, we celebrate a chicken named Mike.
In 1945 in Fruita, Colorado is when the legend started. Lloyd Olsen went out that evening to bring back a chicken for dinner. While cutting the head off the chicken Mr. Olsen missed the jugular vein and noticed that Mike was still living.
Once he realized that Mike the chicken wasn't going to die he decided to take care of him. Granted he was walking around like a drunk person, he was still able to walk around a perch himself.
Everyone brushed off Mike like he was a myth but Mr. Olsen knew otherwise. It was his chicken after all. He took Mike to the University of Utah to show that Mike was still a living chicken. Just without his head.
Mike's fame grew from there and that is when they started to tour with companies that showed the weird and unusual. He grew so popular during his time that he was featured in Time and Life Magazines. At the top of Mikes success, Mr. Olsen took home $4,500 a month. Which now would be in the ballpark of $48,300 dollars.
The sideshow traveling would come to an end in 1947 while in Phoenix. Mike got a hold of a corn kernel and began to choke. Mr. Olsen accidentally left his feeding tubes and syringes at the sideshow the night before so they had no way to save Mike. People were hearing stories of Mike the Headless chicken still traveling until 1949 because Olsen himself claimed he sold Mike instead of sharing his death.
In 1999 was when Mike the Headless Chicken Festival began. It is still celebrated every year in either May or June. This is an awesome festival that celebrated its 19th year.
Not only do they have a 5K run, they also have little games, wing eating contests, different booths and live music every year.