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Annual Gingerbread House Competition Helps Homeless

BOSTON (CBS) — They’re a sure sign of the coming holiday season.

It’s Boston’s annual gingerbread house competition. Eleven chefs and shops square off for the best tasting, best looking creation. The detail and intricacy are amazing, and these gingerbread houses support real housing for people who need it most.

It’s opening day for the Boston Christmas Festival at the World Trade Center and the gingerbread houses are front and center.

Businesses sponsor gingerbread houses to raise money for Housing Families. (WBZ-TV)

Businesses sponsor gingerbread houses to raise money for Housing Families. (WBZ-TV)

“Fantastic, outstanding,” says one visitor.

“I think it’s amazing,” says another.

Even more amazing is that these works of art benefit Housing Families, an organization helping the homeless for the last 30 years.

“These houses, we feel, symbolize a home for every child,” Patty Kelly, from Housing Families, says.

Businesses sponsor each gingerbread house and this year about $8,000 will go to support the organization’s work.

“It means a lot for Housing Families. It helps us with our support services, we run an after school program for our children. It’ll help in many different ways,” Kelly adds.

The best in show award went to Cupcake City in Reading.

Cupcake City in Reading won this year's best in show award at the annual gingerbread house competition. (WBZ-TV)

Cupcake City in Reading won this year’s best in show award at the annual gingerbread house competition. (WBZ-TV)

“This year we did Main Street USA, at Disney World. It took us probably a month, on and off, to make it,” says Kristin Cataldo, the co-owner of Cupcake City.

“I think they’re fun, creative. I come every year. I’m an old kindergarten teacher and these really have a great sense of wonder,” says Ellen Thompson, admiring the gingerbread creations.

The Boston Christmas Festival runs through Sunday. In addition to getting a closeup look at the gingerbread houses, the fair also features hundreds of craft artists showing their work, all for sale.

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