Leechburg Area fundraiser invites public to nosh on some art
It’s a fundraiser you can sink your teeth into.
Leechburg Area High School’s art club will present its annual “Eat Your Art Out” event Saturday.
Now in its 16th year, the competition among students in grades 6-12 will showcase creations made entirely out of food.
Anything edible is allowed. The goal is to create edible sculptures that won’t fall apart. Food items commonly used by students include bread, coconut, M&M’s, jelly beans, fruits and vegetables, pasta, cake, Rice Krispies, fondant, chocolate, icing, cookies, marshmallows, fruit roll-ups and more.
Working solo or in teams, the students are required to prepare all of the food in the school’s cafeteria kitchen the day before the competition, all under the observant eye of Leechburg Area High School art teacher Shayle Prorok.
“This event is so fun for families and the unique aspect of the competition makes for a memorable day,” Prorok said.
All designs are pre-approved by Prorok and teams work for weeks in class collaborating, sketching and discussing their edible sculpture goals.
The event is the largest fundraiser for the school’s art club and the only one of its kind in the Alle-Kiski Valley. The public is invited to review, vote and sample the edible creations from noon until about 1 p.m.
A panel of judges select the winners based on the following criteria: creativity, use of materials and originality.
A people’s choice winner is chosen by attendees, donating spare coins or dollars to their favorite edible creations.
Everyone attending is welcome to nosh on the edible designs once the competition is completed.
Freshman trio Izabella Reed, Taedem Banichar and Falyn Verner are constructing an edible Guy Fieri using condiments. Attendees will make their own sandwiches as part of the edible aspect of their entry.
“When I think of food, I think of Guy Fieri for his food review show. So, why not make Guy Fieri out of food?” Reed said of the television personality and restaurant owner.
Another group plans to fashion a tea set out of chocolate.
Upperclassmen teammates Sophie Daugherty, Karalyn Zeff and Emilie Bohem said they have competed “four or five years” in “Eat Your Art Out” and they are excited to create an ironic edible entry.
“We chose to create this because of the idiom, ‘about as useful as a chocolate teapot,’” Bohem said. “This is a challenge for us.”
Proceeds from the fundraiser will finance an art club field trip. This year, the club will tour Fallingwater in Fayette County.
In 2018, the event raised $1,600.
The winning team gets to throw pies at Prorok at the end of the event — a must-see highlight of the competition.
“Every year I am surprised and impressed with the edible projects the students create,” Prorok said. “This fundraiser incorporates so much cross-curricular and STEAM education. It’s a well-rounded experience for all students to experience.”
Joyce Hanz is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.