Orange County Insight 12/2020

Gingerbread House Contest 2020 Brings Cheer to Downtown Visitors through Storefront Displays

Orange County Parks & Recreation Department thanks all sponsors, partners, participants, host businesses, and the public for their generous support.

The Orange County Gingerbread House Contest developed from an idea originally sprung from the creative mind of OCPR staff member, Rosanna Zamudio; the contest is historically hosted inside the Arts Center in Orange, where the structures can be viewed in a gallery all at once. Due to social distancing requirements, Parks & Recreation had to reimagine how to hold the contest safely. Charlotte Cole of the Orange Downtown Alliance (ODA) and Lori Landes - Carter of Orange County ’ s Tourism Department came up with a solution. Instead of hosting the structures in an interior gallery, why not make the entirety of Main Street in Orange an outdoor gallery? That way, viewers would be able to walk on Main Street and safely view the entries regardless of store hours. The ODA and the Arts Center in Orange encouraged Main Street businesses to volunteer their storefront window space to host the works of local gingerbread architects. In all, eight businesses came forward to help: Orange Pharmacy, Lacy ’ s Florist, Finders Keepers, Grelen Downtown, Wiley Real Estate, the Arts Center in Orange, Objects on Main, and Melrose Antiques. P&R received nine entries to fill the windows. Ballot boxes shaped like gingerbread houses (made by James Cole, the son of ODA Executive Director Charlotte Cole) were placed on both East and West Main Street. These boxes are so intricate that some thought they should win the contest! Though official judges decide 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place, the public is able to vote for “ People ’ s Choice ”, a separate award with a prize on par with 1st place, by placing their vote in the ballot boxes. Prizes were provided by our sponsors, Partners 1st Federal Credit Union, Krecek Kakes, and Orange County Tourism, as well as our Partner organizations mentioned above. They include gift cards, sweet treats, and more!

Page 10 | December 2020

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