ASHEVILLE, N.C., Sept. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- Top editors from Cooking with Paula Deen and Better Homes & Gardens have joined an elite panel of judges for the 18th Annual National Gingerbread House Competition. The competition takes place at The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa in scenic Asheville, N.C. on Nov. 15th. Cindy Cooper, the Editorial Director for Cooking with Paula Deen magazine and Erin Simpson, Associate Food Editor for Better Homes and Gardens magazine will join ten other judges who were announced earlier this year.
Cindy Cooper draws on her creative vision and more than 31 years of experience in the publishing business to produce a magazine that reflects the down-home lifestyle and tastes of restaurateur and TV personality Paula Deen while presenting delectable recipes for Southern coastal dishes in Paula's signature style. An Alabama native, Cindy is a graduate of Auburn University, and is the editorial director of Cooking with Paula Deen. During her previous career within Southern Progress and Oxmoor House, Inc., she led creative teams in the publication of various books and magazines including Cooking Light, Southern Living, Weight Watchers, and Coastal Living.
Erin Simpson is a native of Des Moines, IA. She is Associate Food Editor for Better Homes and Gardens magazine. Ms. Simpson writes about food, develops recipes, and regularly works with celebrity chefs and authors, including most recently Scott Peacock, Tyler Florence, and Nigella Lawson to bring delicious recipes and cooking tips to more than 39 million readers. She has a Culinary Arts degree from Johnson and Wales University and was an apprentice to award-winning cookbook author Nathalie Dupree.
"The National Gingerbread House Competition at The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa has gained a large following since it was launched in 1993. It's a true holiday tradition and we are thrilled to add these prestigious new judges to an already great panel," said Ronald E. Morin, Vice-President and Managing Director at The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa.
Returning judges for the 2010 National Gingerbread House Competition will be:
Gerry Hempel-Davis (Richmond, Va.): A judge at every National Gingerbread House Competition since its inception, Ms. Davis is the author of four books including her latest, "100,000 Miles: A Driving Diva's Guide."
Nicholas Lodge (Norcross, Ga.): Chef Lodge is recognized worldwide as a top instructor in the sugar craft arts and the author of numerous books.
Nadine Orenstein (New York, N.Y.): Curator of the Department of Drawings and Prints of The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Colette Peters (New York, N.Y.): The owner of Colette's Cakes, a specialty cake company in New York City, she has designed celebrity cakes for Whoopi Goldberg, Al Pacino, Sting, Bette Midler, Hilary Clinton, the Rolling Stones and Yoko Ono.
Mark Seaman (Chicago, Ill.): Founder of Marked for Dessert, a boutique cake shop in Chicago, Mr. Seaman is recognized for his special occasion and wedding cake design.
Steven Stellingwerf (Sioux Falls, S.D.): Mr. Stellingwerf has been involved with the sugar arts for more than 30 years.
In addition to Cooper and Simpson, other new judges for the 2010 National Gingerbread House Competition are:
Carol Gable (Anderson, S.C.): Carol Gable has been a producer the last 15 years for the newsmagazine, "Dateline NBC".
Michelle Pullam (Tallahassee, Fl.): Food and Leisure Coordinator for Southern Hospitality Magazine - Traveler.
Jane Robelot (Greenville, S.C.): Jane Robelot is a nationally acclaimed television news anchor and correspondent and the recent recipient of a Peabody award.
Denny Trantham (Canton, N.C.): Denny Trantham is the Executive Chef for The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa.
Also new to the 2010 National Gingerbread House Competition will be a prize for the contestant who enters from the furthest geographical location from The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa and Asheville N.C.
Contestants may deliver their gingerbread houses to The Grove Park Inn Grand Ballroom starting on Sunday, Nov. 14th, from 2-8 p.m. and again on Monday, Nov. 15th, from 7-8:30 a.m. The judging begins on Nov. 15th, with the awards presented that day at 5 p.m.
Hundreds of entries are expected across four categories: Adult (18 years and older), Teen (13-17 years old), Youth (9-12 years old) and Child (5-8 years old). Entries are judged on overall appearance, originality/creativity, difficulty, precision and consistency of theme. The National Gingerbread House Competition™ awards more than $12,000 in cash and prizes. The grand prize winner receives a $3,000 cash prize, plus a two night Club Floor stay at The Grove Park Inn & Spa Resort, complete with dinner for two and breakfast daily at the historic hotel. All contestants will receive a personalized certificate.
All of the entries will be on display at The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa from Nov. 17th to Jan. 3rd. The public is invited to view the displays any Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Groups and bus charters are asked to call ahead for reservations.
About The Grove Park Inn & Spa: The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa is one of the South's most venerable and famous grand resorts. Built in 1913 from granite stones mined from Sunset Mountain, the resort overlooks the Asheville skyline and provides guests with majestic views of the legendary Blue Ridge Mountains. It's a monument of comfort and relaxation, offering 512 guest rooms and suites, a four-diamond restaurant and other fine dining establishments; a Donald Ross designed golf-course; a retail village comprised of four specialized boutiques; fitness facilities; and a spectacular, award-winning spa. The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa is proud to be the home of The National Gingerbread House Competition.™
SOURCE The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa