"Clowning Around with Cotton Candy," the winning cake from 2016's event.
On June 24, professionals, home bakers, and students will meet at the Southern Food and Beverage Museum to compete in the second annual New Orleans Big Top Cake Competition and Bakery Carnival.

The day long festival of sweets features a cake decorating competition judged by food professionals. The theme for the 2017 event is "It's Happy Hour Somewhere!" and the competitors will decorate cakes following that theme.

First, second, and third place winners in the adult/profession and student categories will be chosen, along with a "People's Choice" award chosen by those who attend. In 2016, the first competition was won by chef Melissa Daniel from Rouses Markets in Louisiana.

Participants must register by May 31, but late entries may be taken if space is available. Each baker must make a real cake that can be viewed and tasted by the judges as well as a copy "dummy" cake on decorated Styrofoam. Winning "dummy" cake entries will be displayed at the Southern Food and Beverage Museum for a year following the competition.

“Judging will be based on how they look and how they taste. We want to let everybody know it's not just for professionals, there's an adult category and one for students,”  says Angela Wilson, a chef instructor at Delgado Community College's Culinary Arts.

The Bakery Carnival portion of the event will feature bakeries offering samples of their sweet treats to attendees, who will have a chance to vote for their favorite bakery from the carnival. Each person attending will receive two tickets, one to vote for a favorite decorated cake in the Big Top Cake Competition and one to choose a favorite Bakery Carnival treat.

Attendance is free with museum admission of $10.50 for adults, $5.25 for students, seniors, and military. For more information, click here.