Tidewater School of Eliot won first prize in the Gingerbread Contest at Strawbery Banke Museum, according to the Museum's announcement last week. Students in Grades 1-3 created a scene depicting a Native American camp at the onset of winter, centuries ago. Wigwams of gingerbread, glowing fires made of melted candy, and tiny snowshoes of sugar illustrated how the Abenakis would prepare their food and shelter for the winter and make ready for winter hunting and trading.
Tidewater's entry, titled "Abenakis at Pisgadegwah", was declared the winner of the Youth Group division by popular vote among the thousands of visitors to the Museum's 30th Annual Candlelight Stroll in Portsmouth. Gingerbread creations were submitted by contestants in three categories and were on display from December 6-20.
According to Dennis Drennan, teacher for Grades 2&3, "We chose this theme for our entry because we had been studying Native Americans and the Abenakis lived in our area. A project like this really stimulates the imagination, and our students love to work with their hands. They got into the spirit of it, stringing "bead necklaces" of colored pasta and decorating "animal skins" made of sugar dough."