There’s no denying it’s the holiday season when entering the State Room. The first thing visitors see— and smell— is the life-size gingerbread house in the lobby.
About 20 School of Culinary Arts students in Chef Grady Perryman’s classes spent three days baking and building the gingerbread house in what has become an annual tradition.
Each year the gingerbread house has a different theme. This year’s house boasts chocolate gears and bolts and a number of askew chimneys to give it a steam punk style.
“We kick around ideas, kind of workshop things,” Perryman said. “Sometimes we know the theme weeks ahead, sometimes it’s the night before.”
It took 250 pounds of gingerbread and about 10 pounds of chocolate to cover and decorate the house that stands about eight feet tall and five feet wide.
The students started baking gingerbread on Nov. 18 with construction underway on Nov. 21 and 22, right before Thanksgiving break.
“It doesn’t feel like work. It’s fun,” said culinary student Amanda McGeady. “I grew up making gingerbread houses with my mom, but nothing like this.”
The gingerbread house will stay up through December and the holiday break. When the students return in January, it will be time to take their creation down.
Culinary student Faith Morgan admits it won’t be easy tearing it down.
“All that work, and it will be gone,” Morgan said.
Perryman is one person who won’t be sad to see the gingerbread house go.
“It will have done its duty. Just like ice sculptures or showpieces, it serves its purpose,” he said.
To see more photos of this year's gingerbread house, visit the OSUIT Flickr page