The judges have spoken! This year’s panel of judges recently completed scoring submissions in the 35th Annual Gingerbread Gallery at the Erie Canal Museum, 318 Erie Boulevard East in downtown Syracuse. This year’s judges were Fiona Day of Pie’s The Limit Bakery in the Salt City Markey (, Merike Treier, Executive Director at Downtown Committee of Syracuse (, and Brad Vivacqua, Spectrum News Reporter ( Thirty-two gingerbread submissions were judged on the basis of overall appeal, originality, difficulty, and creative use of materials. Top bakers in the Youth, Family/Group, and Senior categories are honored with ribbons. Cash prizes go to the top three winners in the Confectioner category, and special ribbons are awarded to the baker whose work is judged to best represent the Erie Canal and the creation voted the People’s Choice.

Over 30 gingerbread creations are on display at the Erie Canal Museum, including this year’s Confectioner and People’s Choice winner Memories of the Glen Loch Restaurant by Angela and Marisa Finistrella.

Museum visitors voted for the People’s Choice winner through December 31. This year’s People’s Choice was a close race, but with 12.6% of the votes, we have a winner.

People’s Choice:

Memories of the Glen Loch Restaurant by Angela and Marisa Finistrella

Here are this year’s top Gingerbread Gallery creations and their bakers:


First Place: A Sneak Peak by Isabel Mamorella

Second Place: Lighthouse at the End of the Canal by Alicia Snyder

Third Place: 200th Christmas on the Erie Canal bySamuel Thomas Cosentino


First Place: Christmas at Camp byShayna Gersch

Second Place: Mer-Mazing Time in the Deep Blue Sea by the Piper Family

Third Place: A Willy Wonka Christmas by Jane Verostek, Minerva Miller and Octavia Miller


First Place: Trick or Treat – You First! by Ginny Mecomber

Second Place: Cabin by the Canal by Liz Weaver Casazza


First Place: Memories of the Glen Loch Restaurant by Angela and Marisa Finistrella

Second Place: “And to All a Good Night” by Marnie Day

Third Place: 1000 to Genesis by Samaya and Roy Nasr

Erie Canal Theme:

“LOCK”ing in a Winter Wonderland by the Steer Schoenberger Family

Each year the Erie Canal Museum transforms into a festive 1800’s canal town street scene with gingerbread creations on display in storefront windows. The exhibit, which began as a one-day architecture display in 1986, celebrates the holidays, local landmarks, and Central New York’s Erie Canal heritage with confectionery creations by professional and amateur bakers of all ages. The 36th Annual Gingerbread Gallery is on display through January 9, 2022. The Museum is open daily from 10 AM to 4 PM, but closes at 2 PM on December 24 and 31, and is closed all day December 25 and January 1. Admission to the Erie Canal Museum, which included the Gingerbread Gallery, is $10 for adults, $7 for seniors (65+), $4 for children (3-18) and free for children 2 & under. 

Established in 1962, the Erie Canal Museum preserves and showcases the only existing weighlock building in the United States, and shares the history and impact of the Erie Canal through permanent and changing exhibits, interactive displays, audio narratives, and original artifacts. The Erie Canal Museum’s programs are made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature. The Erie Canal Museum is funded in part by a Humanities New York SHARP Grant with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the federal American Rescue Plan Act. Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed by the Erie Canal Museum do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities. For more information about the Erie Canal Museum, visit or email