Huntington Holiday Bake-Off!

by:  Thom Dunn at 12/17/2013

Deck Deane Hall With Tasty Baked Goods / Fa La La La La / La La La La...

This past Monday was our annual Huntington Holiday Party, which means three things: Candy Cane Ravioli*, Michael Maso's Year-In-Review Poem, and the Staff Bake-Off. Unfortunately, there was no candy cane ravioli this year. Not that I'm bitter or anything. But I am bitter about that time that my Double Chocolate Blood Orange Stout was disqualified because it "wasn't actually baked" (whatever, there was yeast and chocolate and oatmeal in it. That count).

Ahem. Where was I? Yes, that's right. The Bake-Off! The winning treats were judged by a highly trained panel of culinary experts including General Manager Sondra Katz, Assistant Audience Services Manager Derrick Martin, and Sound Engineer J Jumbelic, none of whom were in any way biased towards things that involved bacon. Really.

Here's the Dessert Menu for the evening, and a little shout-out to the multitalented staffer that baked it:


Amor Al Fuego (Mexican Chocolate Cake) by Mercedes Roman-Manson, Calderwood Pavilion House Electrician


Chocolate Maple Cookies by Andrew Brown, Calderwood Professional Intern


Delicious Brownies Made With Guinness and Bailey's and Possibly Some Jameson That I Refuse To Call By Their Real Name Because It Would Anger My Uncle From Belfast by Anna Trachtman, Calderwood Pavilion Management Assistant


"Sacrilegious" Bread Pudding by Katie Most, Calderwood Events Coordinator

"Director's Special" aka Bacon Apple Crisp (available with cider or bourbon) by Anna Correa, Box Office Representative, and Gabe Hughes, Calderwood Front-of-House Staff



Cranberry Rosemary Thyme Trees by Sam Pagnotta, Scenic Artist


Marshmallow Brownie Bars by Ali Leskowitz, Assistant Company Manager


Pumpkin Cream Cheese Bundt Cake by Kat Herzig, Master Electrician


Vanilla Chip Pistacho Cookies by Becky Hylton, Costumes First Hand


Apple Pie Bars by Chris Largent, Calderwood House Carpenter


Rum-Infused Eggnog Cupcakes (!!) by Raissa Bretaña, Costumes Professional Intern


Sugar Cookies by Bryce Avery, Calderwood Assistant House Manager


Salty Honey Pie by Lisa McColgan, Annual Fund Coordinator


Chocolate Cupcakes with Caramel Sauce by Tiffany Evans, Database Coordinator


Chocolate Temptation by Catherine Halpin, Development Associate


"Jane Fonda In...Peanutella!" by Charles Haugland, Artistic Programs and Dramaturgy


Peppermint Chocolate Blossoms by Rob Orzalli, Box Office Representative


Alli Engelsma-Mosser by Alli Engelsma-Moser, Special Events Manager, who also made a Potato Chip Short Bread that I failed to get a picture of.

And the winners...


Maple Pecan Macaroons by Alisa Hartle, Electrics Professional Intern


Triple Chocolate Trifle Cake by Kara Nemergut, Calderwood Front-of-House Staff


Snowman Sur-pies by Stephanie Ormston, Marketing Professional Intern, whose score was somehow not penalized despite the fact that she forced us to eat Candy Corn after Halloween.


Sweet Pear Gorgon Tart by Allison McDonough, Assistant to Michael Maso, whose Grand Prize winning was totally not rigged or anything.

And while we're unable to share the entirety of Michael Maso's year-end speech, here's a delightful little GIF of the end of it, to satisfy your curiosity:


*Yes, I realize it's just lobster ravioli with a cool striped outside. But that doesn't make it any less delicious!


  1. I was going to make a comment about resenting the "it was rigged" comment, citing that I came in 2nd last year, but then I realized that doesn't actually help my case... :) #humblebrag
  2. Which one was the "cupcake/brownie" category? I see cookies, cake and a pie-like thing....
  3. I took a day off from work to begin my baking yeestrday! It's a change from our annual family cookie bake day that I've hosted for 15 years. This year we're trying a family cookie exchange for the first time.
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About me

Thom Dunn is the Web & New Media Manager at the Huntington, meaning it's his job to play around on the Internet and make things cool. He handles all of the video content and social media as well, and has the biggest computer monitor in the office. Like, ginormous.

Outside of the Huntington, Thom is a writer, musician, and homebrewer. It's all pretty cool. You can find out more about it at

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