“Icing the competition” are the operative words for a trio of retail baking pros who were selected as the finalists for the International Dairy Deli Bakery Association's (IDDBA) 24th annual Cake Decorating Challenge to be held at IDDBA 19 in Orlando. IDDBA runs June 2-4.
Over the course of the confab, contestants will create bakery case cakes, a tiered special occasion cake and themed/custom design cakes and will compete for best-tasting cake, People’s Choice award and overall first-, second- and third-place trophies.
The decorators receiving an all-expense paid trip to compete are:
- Joni Graham, Loblaw Cos. Ltd., Toronto. A self-taught decorator who gained and refined her skills through practice and passion, Graham started from home 17 years ago and has been decorating for Loblaw’s affiliate store, Carmen’s Independent City Market, for three years.
- Dana Nygaard, Hy-Vee, Robbinsdale, Minn. Beginning at Hy-Vee as a bakery/sweet shop clerk before becoming a cake decorator, Nygaard became an official decorator in 2017 through Hy-Vee’s cake decorating training courses.
- Jess Tatham, Publix, Gulf Breeze, Fla. With five years of experience decorating cakes and zero knowledge about decorating prior to joining Publix, Tatham learned her way around the cake decorating life through in-store Publix decorators who trained her.
In addition to gaining recognition for themselves, their stores and their companies through the Cake Decorating Challenge, Madison, Wis.-based IDDBA said the participants will have a chance to further advance their skills and uncover more potential while discovering cutting-edge trends and techniques to bring back to their store.
Attendees can watch these decorators create edible works of art and vote on their favorite each day for the People’s Choice award.