Monday, April 29, 2013

Let Them Eat Cake at Sweet Beginnings!

My judging clipboard; Best Decorated Cupcakes - adorable little shoes! Best Decorated Cake, and the row of cakes I was assigned to judge ... :)

I was thrilled to be one of the judges for the Perry Nursery School's annual fundraiser, Sweet Beginnings, last week. My category was "Best Tasting Cake" - gee, what a rough job, huh??? Taste three carrot cakes, a banana cake, two chocolate cakes, a pineapple cake, and an angel food cake ... whee!

So after assessing appearance, moistness, texture, uniqueness, and flavor, the "Best Tasting Cake" category was won by Perry's staff social worker Kathy Manta, for her carrot cake ... sigh ... :)

Winners in the other categories were:

Best Decorated Cupcakes: Rachel Stewart
Best Decorated Cake: Cheryl Baryo
Best Tasting Cupcakes: Pat Hutchins

There was also an amazing buffet, served by Fabulous Food, Inc.:

The Perry Nursery School is such a tremendously good cause, and I'm proud to do whatever I can to support them (primarily through publicizing this grand party; I wish I had more time, so I could actually volunteer there, too). Adorable at-risk preschoolers from low-income families - "the working poor," as Executive Director Sandy Hilton phrased it while speaking at the event - often with single parents or being raised by grandparents, come to Perry and are given pre-/post-school care, a good lunch, an education, counseling and, most importantly, love. They and their families are supported in many ways, far beyond just the three proverbial "R"s and learning to play well with others. Perry accomplishes a tremendous amount with limited resources, and so it's wonderful to attend Sweet Beginnings and find so many dedicated supporters, staff, volunteers, and others who work so hard to raise money to meet the students' and schools' needs.

Sweet Beginnings also offered a cooking demonstration by French chef Brigitte Romero, a cake walk (with the assortment of beautifully decorated cakes offered as prizes), a raffle, a cupcake tower-building competition, and a silent auction with prizes ranging from a handmade stained glass decoration to a Japanese tea set and from a golf outing to a culinary trip to Paris. I was thrilled to have the "buy it now" option, rather than agonizing over whether I'd win my chosen item and having to babysit it all night, and happily went home with a brand new cupcake carrier (something I didn't have and needed desperately!) and adorable little cupcake plates - perfect for serving, for using as a butter dish, and for taking pictures for ye olde blog!

Lucy Ann Lance, local DJ and community supporter extraordinaire, was the evening's emcee and did an amazing job keeping things lively. She gave some of the older children who attended the event an opportunity to shine by giving them chances to describe raffle items or choose winning tickets, which made things so much fun for everyone. MUCH credit goes to Perry's Development Director, Sandy Williams, for organizing this exceptional event - it was fabulous! I'm honored to have been invited to judge two years in a row, and am looking so forward to continuing to support Perry Nursery School!


Jenn said...

What a great event... and yea, must be hard being a the best tasting cake judge!!! lol

Cranberry Morning said...

Tough job, Mary. So kind of you to be willing. :-) And it's a good thing I wasn't asked, for I'd be so prejudiced toward carrot cake in the first place, that the others wouldn't stand a chance.

Sandy said...

Yay! What fun. Thank you for supporting Perry Nursery School!!!

Judee@ Gluten Free A-Z Blog said...

How fun to be a judge for something so delicious . Nice to be able to mix business with pleasure.. The cakes sound amazing.

Nicole said...

I was craving cake earlier this week.. now i'm doomed!!

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