General Competition and Rules

Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden is hosting a cake contest in celebration of its 20th Anniversary this year! The contest will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, October 5th.

Theme and size requirements:

The theme for the Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden cake decorating contest is “A Garden Celebration”.   All entries must reflect the theme of the contest. Entrants my only submit one cake for judging. Entry must not exceed a 24x24 inch space for display.

Cake and Decorating:

All entries must be comprised of Styrofoam dummies and fondant. All decorations must be edible. Entries, including decorations, must be 100% edible except for columns, supports, wires and stamens. No ribbons or other non-edible decorations will be permitted. Use of other non-edible substances may cause the entry to be disqualified. Cakes can be stacked or tiered. Multiple tier cakes encouraged but not necessary. Shaped or carved cakes, 2-D, or 3-D cakes and sculptures are allowed. Any sugar media or technique may be used. Business identifying marks, advertisements, photos, etc, will be allowed to be displayed along with the entry. The entry must be the sole and original work of only the person or persons listed on the Registration Form. Team or group entries are only allowed in the professional bakeries category. All entries must be the original design and work of the competitor. Taking inspiration from others’ work and techniques is acceptable, but copies are not acceptable.


Judging of the entries will be completed by a team of qualified judges selected by the Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden organizers. The judges’ decisions will be final. Entries will be separated by amateur and professional however, they will all be judged with the same criteria. Judging will be conducted consensus style. Judges will choose the top 3 cakes in both categories and there will be a people’s choice award. Entries are only judged according to the criteria.

Entries will be judged on the following criteria:

  • Originality and Creativity (color, design, etc.)
  • Overall appearance and neatness of cake covering/decoration
  • Application of the theme
  • Precision of Technique (skill, precision, number & difficulties of techniques)
  • Structure and Support (size, shape & structure)


All entrants must submit a registration form by October 1st. Early registration is encouraged to help plan space needs. Entries will be displayed on 6-foot tables. Only register if you are able to participate. Although precautions will be taken, event organizers will not be responsible for theft or damage. Entrants are responsible for any and all safety issues pertaining to their entries and absolve Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden Board, organizers and sponsors of any liability related to damage caused to persons or property by the entry.


To learn more about the cake contest, contact us at (704) 829-1295 or