PITTSBURGH -- Gingerbread houses constructed by North Hills Middle School seventh and eighth grade GATE students won second and third place in the city of Pittsburgh’s 17th annual Gingerbread House Competition.
About 30 GATE students split into two groups created two entries -- a festive holiday fireplace scene and a Roman colosseum made entirely of Rice Krispie Treats.
The holiday scene, created by seventh-graders Chloe Johnson, Sopha Murgi, Faith Evans, Sophia Kvarnstrom-Meissner, Lilly Larkin, Lily McCarty, Madelyn Massucci, Emma Power, Riley McElhinney, Hannah Reynolds and Jenna Woelke, and eighth-graders Jack Alexander, Ava McElhaney, Avery Gallagher and Riley Franz, won second place in the middle school division and the Roman Colosseum entry, created by seventh-graders Riley Farrar, Conor Greer, Cory Chen, Othmana Eljoufri, Gavin Schomaker, Justin Massucci, Joey Majczyk, and eighth-graders Seamus Lindblom, Zoe Hobbs, Cadence Bronder and Daniel Dalton, won third place.
Both gingerbread houses are entirely edible.
NHMS GATE teacher Melanie Naugle said planning for the competition began in September and, after plans were finalized, students worked when they could either alone, in pairs and in small groups to complete the structures.
"I've never worked with students who shared ideas and created a project with so little personal ego,” said Naugle. "They were all excellent team members and I repeatedly told them how proud I was of their selflessness, comradery, support of one another, creativity and respect for each other’s comments. All of that really paid off!"
The gingerbread houses among hundreds that will remain on display in the grand lobby of the City-County Building on Grant Street downtown through Jan. 3, 2020.