Local Treasures with Pia: Gingerbread Build-Off Returns

Airway Heights, Washington – I dream, you dream, we all dream of making the perfect gingerbread house, the masterpiece that will gently scent our house with lovely holiday notes of ginger, cinnamon, and cloves, and serve as a centerpiece for an entire holiday season.

But building a gingerbread house from scratch can be a little (or a lot) intimidating, and that’s one of the reasons why Christ Kitchen turns to professional chef teams for their annual Gingerbread House Build-off.

“The Gingerbread Build-off is a community event where local chef teams compete to build a structure that is chosen around a theme each year,” said Kim Kelly, CEO and Executive Program Director for Christ Kitchen Ministry. One year, for instance, the theme was Christmas Songs and the teams each picked a song, like Silent Night. “It’s on a first come first served basis so the team that first picked that song is the only one to do it.”

The pro teams all gather at Northern Quest Casino and build their gingerbread masterpieces in four hours, in front of a live crowd on December 5.

“It’s free to watch and it is such fabulous fun,” Kelly said.

While at the event, children can purchase a gingerbread house kit and make their own house at tables that are set up right next to the pros.

“Kids can decorate their creation right there and there are also pictures with Mr. and Mrs. Gingerbread,” Kelly said. “There are lots of other fun festive things to do as well. We try to make it a really fun event for everyone.”

The pro gingerbread houses remain on display at Northern Quest until Christmas Eve. Families can stop by and view the houses – and perhaps get ideas for their own gingerbread creations at home – or do the little gingerbread build-off treasure hunt that may lead them to a small prize.

“It’s become a fun holiday tradition for many,” Kelly said.

The build-off takes place on December 5 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Northern Quest Pavilion, 100 N. Hayford Road in Airway Heights.

It’s free to come in and watch the building competition. Chef teams interested in competing can reach you to Christ Kitchen 509-325-4343 or via email.

Photo credit: Christ Kitchen

To learn more about Christ Kitchen, its catering, and food truck services, as well as how the kitchen helps women gain marketable skills and work their way out of poverty, visit christkitchen.org

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