What a difference a year makes.
In 2020, Gingerbread Spectacular judges created an “Almost Most Spectacular” award for Carla Warren. This year, Warren won the big one: Most Spectacular, for “Santa’s Greenhouse.”
The Gingerbread Spectacular continues to be a most beloved, super sweet holiday event held at the Opera House at Boothbay Harbor. The Opera House picks the judges. John Webster/Orne’s Candy, Brenda Blackman/The First, Cindy Steane/Boothbay Harbor Inn, Kim Martin/Eventide Specialties and, yours truly, Lisa Kristoff/A&E Editor, Boothbay Register selected 12 gingerbreads for awards in 2021:
Best Traditional Gingerbread House Design: Susan Brackett, “The Night Before Christmas” – From the detailed, painstakingly placed rocks of chimney and Chex rooftop to the fireplace burning inside and Dad in his cap who sprang from his bed to see what was the matter ...,” charm abounds.
Most Creative: “Creatures” – “This Forest Don’t Sleep” – Pay attention to everything happening with the gingerbreads in this wood. So much detailing, from the rings of the center tree stump to the gingerbread people watching the sap run inside it; the mushrooms, the earth ...
Best Representation of a Local Landmark: Marge Kilkelly, Holly Stover, Joe Merry – “Christmas at Freeport Station” – The old-fashioned charm of Boothbay Railway Village Museum’s Freeport Station set upon a spinning disc to make sure you don’t miss the vignettes going on all around.
Most Uncontrollable Icing: Octavia Aurora & Family: “The Land of Christmas Magic & Misfit Trees” – Great lighting, textures and colors.
Best Landscaping – Areth Foster Webster, Noel Twigg, Alison Evans; Lettie, Elise and Dana Wilson – “Webster Woods.” Classic forest setting complete with vegetable garden, woodland critters; cozy lights inside; complete with a guitar-playing marshmallow snowman.
Most Obsessive Compulsive: Rimar Reed – “How Odd?” This baker counted all of her materials.
Best Holiday Spirit: Residents & Staff at St. Andrews Village – “Christmas Party @ the Inn” – This fun, charming scene screams holiday spirit.
Most Hilarious: Susan Brackett – “Geico Gecko”: The world-famous lizard traveling with proof of vaccination.
Most Delicious Looking: Peyton McGuire – “I Want S’more”: Even if you aren’t a S’mores fan, this one is undeniably yummy looking!
Best Youth Entry: Serafina Record – “Check and Mate!” These are chess board pieces you’d just love to capture.
The judges felt compelled to create one new category, Best Representation of A Local Event, for the “Charlie Begin Memorial Lobster Boat Races” gingerbread created by Alyssa Allen, Michael Maxim, Ted Nelson and Colby Allen. From the lobster boats to the water (so well done – and so much sugar!) and shack ... exceptional!
Don’t miss it! The doors open on this year’s show Thursday, Dec. 16, at 10 a.m. and right on through Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day. Some of the gingerbread creations are for sale by way of silent auction all four days. Masks are required to be worn properly while inside the Opera House during the Spectacular. Those under age 2 are exempt from the mask requirement.
No admission fee, but donations are gratefully accepted. And there’s free parking at the Opera House at 86 Townsend Ave., Boothbay Harbor.