COLUMBIA - Several cable TV shows focus on the world of artisan-crafted cakes, but people got the chance to see some gorgeous cakes firsthand Wednesday. The Missouri Student Association held the first Mizzou Cake Challenge, which invites both amateur and professional cake decorators to compete for cash prizes. More than fifty five entries came from as far as Illinois and Nebraska. Food Channel celebrity Duff Goldman helped judge the competition.
The MSA organized the contest as a prelude to Goldman's Wednesday night visit to campus. MSA Speaker Committee Chair Amanda Gastler said she wasn't suspecting the hundreds of people who came by to view the cakes. "The reactions have definitely exceeded my expectations. I had no idea this many people would be involved or even interested," Gastler said.
Amateurs and professionals compete in separate categories, and professional cake decorator Edith Hall says she's thankful for that separation. "I saw where the professional entries ended, and thought 'Oh good! I don't have to compete against some of the non-professionals!' because there's a three or four in there that are really good. I'm very impressed," Hall said.
Entrants put their spin on the contest's "A Mizzou Spring" theme. Cakes depicted graduation scenes, Jesse Hall, and quite a few Truman the Tigers. Hall entered a two foot long Truman reclining with a graduation cap on. She used rice cripsy treats to add structural strength.
While there's been no official discussion, Gastler and Hall both like the idea of making the contest an annual event. Hall said it could give her a chance to show off her products; Gastler noted that the event could expand. Gastler said she had to turn down more than one hundred applications due to space limitations.