Yearbook staff builds gingerbread houses

Last Saturday night, the Northern Light Yearbook staff had a gingerbread house contest at senior Grace Needham’s house. About a week before, Needham found gingerbread house kits at Target on sale. She gathered up enough supplies and decorations for the houses, so everyone could decorate their house differently.

“My family and I began preparing a few weeks ago getting the gingerbread houses and supplies,” Needham said. “About an hour before, a few people came over to glue the houses together, but some ended up breaking.”

Everyone arrived to the party around 7 p.m. and Needham had pizza and snacks for everyone. They all socialized and laughed about random topics that they normally wouldn’t talk about. Not everyone is able to hang outside of the classroom together, therefore it is a new experience they get to share as a staff.

“It was nice to talk with each other about things other than yearbook,” senior Jocelyn Long said. “It was fun getting to know everyone a little better.

After eating dinner and snack, Needham gathered everyone together to explain the rules. Everyone was paired in groups of two and they had 35 minutes to create their best gingerbread house. It was chaos from the start. They all tried to gather most of supplies, so they wouldn’t run out. Needham has a big center island in her kitchen where most of the houses were being made while three others were on the table next to it.

“We didn’t really have a strategy to our house,” sophomore Jane Gurley said. “We kind of made it up as we went along.”

Many other groups didn’t have a set plan as to how they wanted their house to look. A lot of houses had some things in common, including snow on or around the house, snowmen or people next to their houses and wreaths on the front of their house made out of candy. Although many had similarities, they all turned out unique from one another. For example, some pairs took the competition seriously and decorated their house with snow, lights and a sleigh. While another group had their roof fall off and made a story out of it.

After the 35 minutes was over, Needham’s brother judged each of the houses. At first, he gave five houses first, second, third, fourth or fifth place. He thought he was done judging until some persuading from the contestants changed his mind. He then went back to a few houses and changed their placing.

“It was funny watching my brother go back and forth switching the winning house,” Needham said. “A lot of people were yelling at him to give first place to their house, but he did a great job.”

Senior Grace Cote and sophomore Christel De Bruin won first place overall. Senior Jocelyn Long and junior Annie Stier won second place and senior Gretchen Ellis and sophomore Jane Gurley won third place.

“Overall, we all had a lot of fun and laughed together as a staff,” senior Grace Glaser said. “I would definitely do it again.”