The Holiday Port Festival raised $2,800 for the Mount Baker Chapter of the American Red Cross and collected 727 pounds of food for the Bellingham Food Bank, according to a press release from the port:
"The festival's Gingerbread House Contest received 106 entries this year from bakers of all ages and abilities. The People's Choice Award this year went to Jim Hildenbrand for 'Cuckoo for Christmas,' a working clock made of edible materials. This award is chosen by event visitors who voted for their favorite gingerbread creation during the festival, and the winner receives a cruise trip for two donated by San Juan Cruises.
"Each of the 10 categories was judged separately before the festival began, with ribbons for first, second and third place given out in each category based on originality and creativity, difficulty and precision and overall appearance. The contest had a themed category for the second time, and this year's theme was landmarks. It included Mount Baker, the Eiffel Tower, Galbraith Mountain in winter, and many others. In addition to houses, there was also a girl playing the violin, an outer space scene, airplanes, Lake Padden and Santa's Workshop - complete with a button visitors press to activate an electronic conveyor belt for Santa's elves to wrap presents."
Here are the winners in the 18th annual Gingerbread House Contest:
People's Choice Award: Cuckoo for Christmas by Jim Hildenbrand;
Family: Family Farm Christmas by Lexie, Katie and Doug Clark and Caitlynn, Joy and Charles Sarin; Brick Brothers Construction by Jeni, Joshua and Joel Marr; Mickey Mouse Club House by Daniele O'Connell and family;
Youth 5 and under: Place Come Fly with Me by Russell Miller; Santa's Neighborhood by Skylar Stone; The North Pole by the Bellingham Childcare and Learning Center Cheetah Classroom;
Youth grades K-3: Magic Treehouse by Porter Hildenbrand; Story Time by Sonia Wolgamot; Lake Padden by Abby Scoggins;
Youth grades 4-8: Practice Makes Perfect by Elena Wolgamot and Winter Wonderland by Lilly Cheldelin; Polar Express by Evergreen Christian School; Cruisin' by Audrey Haley;
Youth grades 9-12: Rosy's Candy Cottage by Madeline Meloy; Petite Maison en l'hiver by Ella and Ivy Denham-Conroy and Talia Sheinkopf; Christmas Minion Style by Korbyn Cable;
Individual/adult: 2ZMtns by Amy Burghart; Ho! Ho! Holiday Fitness! by Bellingham Jazzercise; The Power of Pink by Whatcom Women;
Senior citizen/senior organization: City Sidewalks Christmas by Llew Hollingsworth; Fairy Tale Hansel and Gretel's Gingerbread House by Zdenka Klecka; St. Francis is Out of this World by the St. Francis Intergenerational Program;
Professional baker: Santa's Workshop by the Enstad Family; Cuckoo for Christmas by Jim Hildenbrand; Estelle and Olive's New Playhouse by Rebecca Kaiser;
Business/non-profit: Holiday Glamour by the Black Market Boutique; This Boot is Made for Shopping! by 12th Street Shoes; Candy Cane Cottage by Loretta Wilson/Ultimate Gingerbread;
Theme (landmarks): Whatcom Rowing Association Boathouse by the Whatcom Rowing Association; the White House by Mark, Carol, Noland and Danielle Bryant; Bellingham Cruise Terminal by Homeport Learning Center.
The 23rd annual event at the Bellingham Cruise Terminal in Fairhaven featured music, dancing and performances by local bands, dance groups and choirs, free horse-drawn wagon and fire truck rides, Santa, a gingerbread house display, children's art activities and much more. It was presented by the Port of Bellingham. BP Cherry Point, Maxum Petroleum, Applied Digital Imaging, Haggen Food and Pharmacy, Franz Bakery, Dewey Griffin GMC, Subaru, Buick and San Juan Cruises sponsored the event.
Out and About is published Mondays in The Bellingham Herald.
Reach Executive Editor Julie Shirley at email@example.com or call 715-2261.