PITTSBURGH —– Guests are invited to watch the Gingerbread judging contest set for 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, December 18th at The Block Northway. Pastry chefs Daniel Wilson and Marla Mae Harvey recently featured winners of the nationally televised Food Network show Holiday Baking Championship: Gingerbread Showdown, will weigh in with their expertise to select winners in five categories.

Pittsburgh pastry and confectionery Chef Marla Mae Harvey along with pastry Chef Daniel Wilson who also competed on Food Network’s “Christmas Cookie Competition” will utilize their culinary skills to determine who wins Best in Show, Most Creative, Most Festive, Most Humorous and Best Construction.

Over 60 gingerbread houses have been created by individuals, families, Girl Scout troops and various organizations. The sugary exhibit will be in the South Corridor Lower Level between DSW and Land’s End now through January 16, 2022 from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. each day and FREE to the public.

“We are incredibly proud of all the participants who entered their gingerbread house for our first community display. They did an excellent job of showing off their artistic creativity,” said Jamie Pavlot, Director of Experience. “Join us as we watch Pittsburgh’s celebrity winners of Food Network determine best of categories. Come experience this Gingerbread fairy-tale display, custom created and inspired by participants who are excited to celebrate the magic of the season”.

Part of the fun is seeing the details of each entry and the various ways that candy is used to decorate the houses: gum drops, pin wheel candies, jellybeans, gummies, candy canes, M&M’s, Necco Wafers, Christmas quins, mini beads and, of course, frosting! This year’s gingerbread display includes several interesting and quirky titles such as: Scary, Amusement Park, Our House, Santa’s Surprise, Allen Family Treehouse, Happy Holidays, A Home Alone Christmas, Camp Redwing, SEAsons Greetings, Hope House and many more.

To add to the festivities throughout the holidays there will be sounds of the season concerts scheduled throughout the month of December on the upper level. As a bonus, “Sweets and Treats” pop-up vendors will be available at various times to offer specialty items near the gingerbread village so folks can relax and enjoy a beverage and shop for stocking stuffers as they browse the display.