The students and chefs of the baking and pastry arts program at the Niagara Falls Culinary Institute (NFCI) have been working for months now planning and now building the life-size gingerbread village that is a part of “Gingerbread Wonderland.”
This colorful, edible masterpiece takes approximately 3,000 man hours to complete and is comprised of 1,200 pounds of gingerbread, 2,400 pounds of royal icing, 400 pounds of edible decorations and tiles, and 100 pounds of fondant. Last year’s creation was featured in Food and Wine’s list of “7 Magical Gingerbread Houses to See This Season” and this year promises to impress with a new design for guests to enjoy.
As if a giant gingerbread house wasn’t sweet enough, NFCI also offers a variety of holiday-themed activities for the whole family to enjoy. From Saturday, Nov. 30, through Sunday, Dec. 22, visitors can experience live entertainment, face painting, cookie decorating, crafts and even visits with Santa Claus! The hours are from 5-8 p.m. Fridays, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturdays and noon to 4 p.m. Sundays.
For those who wish to view a variety of smaller gingerbread houses, entries in the annual competition can be viewed from Thursday, Dec. 5, through Tuesday, Dec. 10. Those interested in other activities might enjoy an ice-carving demonstration on Old Falls Street at noon on Saturday, Dec. 7, or the train show featured Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 14-15. One of the final special events of the season at NFCI will be a magic show at 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 21.
The Niagara Falls Culinary Institute is located at 28 Old Falls St., Niagara Falls. For more information on the “Gingerbread Wonderland,” visit www.nfculinary.org/gingerbread.