Shannon Berrey

Gingerbread Houses at the Grove Park Inn

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Every year, one of our family holiday traditions is to head to Asheville's historic Grove Park Inn to see the Gingerbread Houses. We are sort of crazy fans of this competition. I look forward to it for months and when I see it advertised in the news, I get busy planning our visit. When arriving at this National Event, one can not show up in just any old plain vehicle, so we got busy on doing a little decorating of our own. My tip is to start from the wheel up. 


It takes time, but it's totally worth it.

We parked that baby and headed inside.

{Graham, Jack's friend went with us. They got a little hungry on the trip and took a small bite out of the side mirror.} 


The Grove Park Inn opened in 1913 and has a wonderful thick rich history behind it. If ever given the opportunity, you should plan a visit. It has had some pretty impressive guests.



{Don't let these cute smiles fool you, Jack took the opportunity to touch his sister which is infuriating her and she is vowing, under her breath, to pop him as soon as I click the button. Even as teenagers folks. geez.}

This is the 19th year of the contest and it has gotten bigger, attracting entries from all over the US, each year. It has been featured on HGTV, Good Morning America {this year on Dec. 23rd}, the Travel Channel, and The Food Network. It's big, peeps.

But don't let the name of the competition confuse you. Yes, there are lots of gingerbread houses, but, there are lots of other gingerbread creations as well. But, every single bit of it must be edible and no entry can exceed 2' in any direction.

There are several categories: child, youth, teen, and adult

Cinderellas Carriage

The Smurfs Toyroom was really sweet. All of the little blue guys working around their mushroom table.

All of these entries had to arrive a week ago. So, some have held up great, but some suffered problems in transit or in just the sheer amount of time they have to sit and support their own weight.   


Musical Melodies, in the childs group, showcased a smarties covered piano {with a little crash of the base of the piano} sitting on a lovely patterned gumdrop rug. I see 'textile designer' in this girls future. 

Apparently this wiseguy opened his wise mouth and had his  head knocked off  bell rung.


At first look I was all 'oh, this is different'..the graffiti, the old truck...But then when I was going through my pictures, I was like 'what happened behind the truck?'. I zoomed in.

What the???! The truck has apparently run over this poor girl and she has somehow already gotten the right arm cast as well as the left hand. So, did the truck take her down in some sort of sick 'hit and run' as she reached for that little flower or did a tree fall on her?? Was she born with that chest or is it a horrible result of the accident?? { If you are the creator of this one, I need  more info}

moving on.

Let's take a look at some really pretty houses. 


 Look at the cutie pants making snow angels!




And then some of the 'not so typical' entries:

Christmas Quilts


I loved all the detail on this Teepee. Jack informed me that the top was made out of Slim Jims. cool. And check out those horses!!

Sponge Bob. {some random information: I really dislike this cartoon and my kids were never allowed to watch it} 

There were all kinds of pretty birds

As well as some Angry Birds.

I could totally see the Gingerbread family and their gingerbread dachshund cruising down I-40, singing along to 'Come on Get Happy' on the 8 track, in this happ'nen cruiser.

Clean dogs.

Snoopy's Christmas

This was one of our very favorite. An enormous carousel horse. We were sad that it didn't have a ribbon attached to it.

Another fave - an opened Bible with tiny people and pieces of the story of Christ's birth.   


Santa riding the camels through the sand pyramids. This one may have been created after a couple glasses of strong stuff.

I loved the idea of this--sweet cuddling of a mom, dad, newborn and toddler on the sofa.


If only everyone was fortunate enough to be 'Home for Christmas.' 

And the Grand Prize winner of all winners:

The old woman who lives in a shoe!!

But collectively, we had a little bit of a different vote on the entry that we felt conveyed the true meaning of Christmas.  

A Wal-Mart Christmas.

Which {obviously} includes a rooftop security camera, ginormous money-asking-Santa-Greeter and tiny amputee children playing in a parking lot of miniature cars. Heck to the yeah.

Go see it.

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Shannon Berrey Bio
I'm an artist, interior designer, wife and mom. Join me here as I share projects, ramblings, and inspirations.
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