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Cake Boss Event…and Learning how to Be a Boss!

Last Thursday was a big night for everyone in Chester at Widener University’s fifth annual “Cake Boss” event. Based off of the popular TLC’s “Cake Boss” originally hosted by Buddy Valastro, in 2012 Widener’s Hospitality Management program hosted their first “Widener Cake Boss” on campus. Four years later, the event has grown and is a huge favorite for everyone! The Boundaries and Bridges project collaborated with the Hospitality student event to also host author and owner of “The White Dog Café” Judy Wicks, to discuss the benefits and the needs of creativity within a community. Both components complimented each other in so many ways.

Twenty-two cakes were displayed and offered to guests in the competition. Each guest paid only $5 to participate, was given a bag of tickets and a lottery chip, and went in to see all the beautiful and delicious smelling creations of both students and community members who entered the competition. After getting a plate full of cake, each individual voted for which they thought was best in that category. Laughter and fun were everywhere! There were three categories to choose the best cake from: Grandma’s Favorite, Most Unique, and Best Presentation. As a non-baker, I wanted to vote for every single one of them, because every one was an amazing creation of itself! Each baker clearly put all of their love of baking, creativity and the culinary arts, into every inch of the cake they presented. One cake was shaped like a Star Wars character, one with so many intricate multi-colored layers creating a candy looking effect, and yet others made you feel like you were at your grandmother’s for a special treat when you were little. Every cake was special in its own unique way and also delicious!

Before everyone was allowed in for the competition, an equally exciting event was happening (which says a lot, because how can you beat lots of delicious cake??). In collaboration with the Boundaries and Bridges Project, Judy Wicks, owner of the Philadelphian prized and internationally known “White Dog Café”, “The Black Cat” and author of “Good Morning, Beautiful Business”, spoke about how she started her business and her journey of learning, loving, and creating in and with her community. Wick’s insight and extensive knowledge of how to create a community centered business valuing locally owned and locally grown products was incredibly eye-opening regarding current important issues we all face in today’s economy, environment, and future. Her journey from building forts as a young girl to building an incredibly successful, sustainable, and important community asset was fascinating and educational. Combining the two creative culinary events allowed everyone to have a chance to imagine, see, and taste the beautiful and creative; and remember how to dream, like Judy did when she was young and built those forts to later create a life size version for everyone to enjoy! This event radiated with fun, creativity, and hope. Hope that what you dream can become reality, if you are willing to put your heart, mind, and passion into what you value and love.

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