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The International Dairy-Deli-Bakery Association (IDDBA) has named the three contestants chosen to participate in the 18th annual IDDBA Cake Decorating Challenge to be held at IDDBA’s Dairy-Deli-Bake 2013 seminar and expo in Orlando, Fla., June 2-4. The three contestants were chosen from a pool of 68 entrants from 31 supermarket chains.
The decorators receiving an all-expense paid trip to compete are:
Kelli Coleman, Dillons, Lawrence, Kan. -- Coleman has been decorating cakes for eight years and has been with Dillons for four and a half years. Although she has taken some Wilton Cake Decorating classes, Coleman is largely self-taught. This talented decorator also is the district trainer for her company’s pastry cases and enjoys participating in events such as bridal shows and the Taste of Lawrence (a local food event).
Dawnette Costa, Giant Eagle, Erie, Pa. -- A cake decorating veteran, Costa has over 30 years of experience. She has been with Giant Eagle for the past 11.5 years. She loves to learn new techniques and is currently helping to develop a dessert program for her company. Most of all, she enjoys the delight of the customers when they pick up their order.
Rebecca Lougheed, Food City, Greeneville, Tenn. -- Lougheed started decorating cakes in 2006 and joined the Food City team the following year. Over the years, with the support of her bakery managers, she has become a skilled decorator. In 2011, she won her company’s first annual cake challenge.
“While many of these decorators have had professional culinary training, many of them are self-taught and have learned their skills on the job,” said Carol Christison, executive director of the IDDBA. “They know what will work, how to work under pressure, and, most importantly, how to WOW the customer.”
The IDDBA’s cake challenge includes three phases. On Sunday, June 2, each contestant will decorate enough cakes to fill one multi-tiered, eight-foot bakery case. On Monday, June 3, each contestant will decorate a wedding cake. Tuesday, June 4 is the special “Decorator’s Choice” theme event.
“Supermarket cake decorators have to be multi-talented,” Christison added. “They need to work at a fast pace to create production cakes and they need to work at their creative peak for custom theme cakes and spectacular wedding cakes. The entrants in this year’s contest meet those demands and demonstrate exceptional performance on all levels.”
The judges for the event will include Luke Bender, manager of technical service, Maplehurst Bakeries, LLC, and Jim Caliendo, dessert training specialist, Rich Products Corporation.
The IDDBA is a nonprofit membership organization serving the dairy, deli, bakery, cheese and supermarket foodservice industries.
IN THE PHOTO: Andria Chinander of Lund Food Holdings (Byerly's), Edina, Minn., took top honors as 2012’s first-place winner of IDDBA’s 17th annual Cake Decorating Challenge.