Competition Information & Rules

Event Location

Rome Commons Ballroom

Competition Day Schedule

Team check-in and photographs 1:00 pm
Competition orientation 1:30 pm
Decorating begins 1:45 pm
Decorating ends 2:45 pm
Popular voting 2:45-3:15 pm
Judging 2:45-3:45 pm
Winners announced 3:50 pm
Event ends 4:00 pm


  • 25 teams will compete. Teams will be selected via a lottery.
  • One team per unit/department.
  • Teams are to consist of five faculty/staff members from a department or unit. Departments can combine to create a team. No undergraduate or graduate students, please.
  • The team member roster must be submitted to University Events and Conference Services by Friday, December 1, 2023.
  • Team members do not need to individually RSVP to the event.
  • Teams are welcome to attend in festive attire and costumes. We love your creativity!
All the Jingle Ladies Team 2018
2019 Gingerbread team picture.
Team shot its lit


Movies and Musicals

Show us your team's most creative and clever take on "movies and musicals." Are you a fan of Broadway? A movie buff? Will your creation have a holiday theme?  Will your house be a mash up and incorporate a UConn theme? The possibilities are endless and we look forward to seeing your team's creative take on this year's theme, movies and musicals!

Gingerbread house with Wizard of Oz theme.
Gingerbread house with Frozen, the movie theme.
Gingerbread house decorated as stage with people from Hamilton the musical.
Gingerbread House decorated in theme of A Christmas Story movie.

The Competition

  • Teams will be provided with a gingerbread house and a bin containing frosting and decorative supplies. Teams may only use the supply bin contents to decorate their gingerbread houses.
  • Teams will be allotted one hour to decorate.
  • Team members will be provided with disposable aprons.
  • Teams will be required to participate in three challenges during the course of the competition. Each challenge will require at least one team member to participate. Past examples include, walking a specified distance with a book balanced on head, trivia quizzes, etc.
  • Teams should be prepared for a few twists, turns, and surprises!
Team working together
Team member drawing Husky Dog
Team exercise walking with books on their heads
Team looking at plans


  • Creativity and good cheer.
  • Festive attire and costumes.
  • Each team member may bring one kitchen utensil/tool. Examples of utensils are: sharp knife, scissors, rolling pin, spatula, etc.  These items will not be provided. Visit the competition FAQ page to learn more.
  • Decorating plans and blueprints will be allowed.
  • One small fan or hairdryer per team may be brought in to aid the frosting drying process. We can not guarantee access to electrical outlets.
  • Your colleagues!  Encourage your colleagues and friends from across campus to join the celebration. They can vote for your team's creation!


  • Outside candy or decorations.
  • Power tools (i.e. drill).
  • Toothpicks.
  • Non candy items found on table that are not intended for decorating the houses (i.e. aluminum supply bin, water bottles, candy wrappers, etc.).
  • Table cloths, decorations, small props.
  • Confetti or glitter.
  • Visit the competition FAQ page to learn more.
Team working and laughing
Team frosting house
Person concentrating

Judging and Voting

  • President Maric and Provost D'Alleva will serve as the official judges.  Each judge will award 25 and 15 points to their personal top two entries.
  • The gingerbread houses must be decorated in a manner that embraces and communicates this year's theme, movies and musicals. Teams are expected to be present at their tables when the judges visit to review.
  • Teams must incorporate all three of the three mystery items supplied during the course of the competition. The items must be used constructively and be visible. Points will be deducted if a team does not do so.
  • Each team will be allotted one voting ticket worth 5 points. This voting ticket may only be used to cast a vote for another team.
  • Each individual attending the event will be allocated one vote to cast for their favorite entry.
  • First and second prizes will be awarded to the two entries with the highest combined scores from the judges and the teams. In the event of a tie, those entries involved will be placed in a random drawing.
  • A “People’s Choice Award” will also be presented. With the exception of the two teams receiving the judge’s awards, the team which receives the most individual votes from guests attending the event will receive a prize and bragging rights! In the event of a tie, those entries involved will be placed in a random drawing.
  • Winners will be announced at the event.
Counting votes
Team photo
Upside down house
Team laughing


First Prize

Second Prize

People's Choice Prize

Houses Following the Event

Following the event each team will be responsible for taking their decorated house back to their department for display or for donating it to a charity.