Wood Memorial Library hosts Gingerbread House Festival

By Kathryn Elliott - ReminderNews
South Windsor - posted Wed., Dec. 4, 2013
Excited for the holiday, Rachel, Katarina and Madeline look into the gingerbread village at Wood Memorial Library. Photos by Kathryn Elliott.
Excited for the holiday, Rachel, Katarina and Madeline look into the gingerbread village at Wood Memorial Library. Photos by Kathryn Elliott.

In its third season as host to New England’s largest display of gingerbread houses, Wood Memorial Library kicked off its Winter Wonderland exhibit on Nov. 29.

Bursting with quintessential holiday charm, the enticing aromas pulled visitors both young and young-at-heart into the library’s multi-level exhibit. Among the edible Frank Lloyd Wrights were a variety of creations including historic homes, children’s stories, and transportation-themed displays by professional and amateur bakers.

“We have approximately 200 entries this year and anticipate thousands of visitors,” said festival founder Bonnie Glover. “Houses come from as far as Greenwich and Boston; however, this is a true community event for South Windsor. It’s become a holiday tradition with repeat visitors.”

On the building’s main level, Lincoln Culinary School’s salute to “Peanuts” included Snoopy and Woodstock waiting for Santa beside the signature red doghouse, while another corner of the cookie neighborhood featured Rapunzel letting down her frosted hair, courtesy of Mill on the River chef Catherine Laughlin.

In tribute to the library’s historic Main Street address, several entries reflected South Windsor landmarks. Created by Ingrid Fraize, a replica of the East Windsor Hill Post Office, measuring approximately 2 feet long and 10 inches high, decorated the main floor lobby. The intricately-detailed structure was one of several entries by Main Street residents committed to preserving area history.

Upstairs, the delectable handiwork continued with a snow-dusted maze of masterpieces. Girl Scout Troop 10984, The South Windsor Public Education Fund, and the American School for the Deaf all decked the halls with gumdrops and goodwill, while the Classic Car Club drove straight into the holiday spirit with a sweet-shingled garage.

The library loans an extensive collection of gingerbread building books for everyone from the novice baker to the cinnamon-seasoned veteran. Children’s stories and pop-up books are also available.

Upcoming program highlights include live music from New Britain pianist Judy Moss on Dec. 8, 2-4 p.m., and classical guitarist Yosh on Dec. 13, 6-8 p.m.

Free to the public, the event relies on raffles and a variety of at-the-door fundraising efforts. Patrons can bid on individual houses for purchase – winners will be announced Dec. 15. Stop by the specialized gift shop located on the upper level with gifts direct from Germany – the birthplace of gingerbread. Items for sale include gingerbread kits, toys, puzzles and a variety of holiday fare. All money raised benefits the library.

More information is available at woodmemoriallibrary.org. The festival runs through Dec. 15.

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