CRANBERRY TWP — Youth bakers from across the region will showcase their creative baking and decorating skills at this year's Great Birthday Bake — a children's cookie competition hosted by Beverly's Birthdays in Cranberry.
Beverly's Birthdays is a nonprofit organization founded in 2012 by Megan Yunn. It provides birthday cheer for children experiencing homelessness and families in need. Beverly's Birthdays currently partners with agencies in the Pittsburgh region to ensure no child is forgotten on his or her special day.
Since inception, Beverly's Birthdays has recognized birthdays for more than 30,000 children and families through six programs.
The Dec. 1 interactive family Birthday Bake celebrates local children and their passion for baking by giving them the opportunity to enter their best cookie recipe into a competition.
Bakers present their creations — which are available for everyone to taste — to a group of celebrity pastry artists and food experts who will judge cookies on appearance, creativity and flavor in four recipe categories.
The ballroom of the DoubleTree Hotel will be transformed into a cookie extravaganza, where visitors can stroll, sample and vote for Overall Best Cookie.
Bakers also decorate and create beautiful and creative cookie display tables, which will also be judged. Guests will enjoy hot cocoa, a flavored milk bar and other food samplings.
More than 30 children participated and over 350 people attended the event last year.
“With attendance continuing to grow, The Great Birthday Bake quickly is becoming a signature event,” Yunn said.
Yunn founded the nonprofit organization seven years ago when she met a young girl named Beverly, who told her she had never had her own birthday party or her own slice of birthday cake. Beverly was from a low-income family that could not afford the extra expense of a birthday party.
Yunn recently received a check for $10,000 from UPMC, which will help her fund more birthdays in the Pittsburgh area.
“We are really looking forward to some great competition with local young talents,” Yunn said of the baking contest. “And a chance for people to learn about Beverly's Birthdays mission to provide birthday cheer for local children experiencing homelessness and families in need.”
The Great Birthday Bake is from noon to 3 p.m. Dec. 1 at The DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Pittsburgh-Cranberry.
Tickets are $15 and children younger than age 5 are free. Visitors are asked to take an unwrapped gift to the event to donate to a child in need. For more information, visit www.beverlysbirthdays.org.