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Christmas Cookie Tour of Inns proceeds distributed

| February 12, 2014

DSCF1532HOLMES COUNTY – At its Jan. 15 board meeting, the Amish Country Lodging Council presented the proceeds from the Christmas Cookie Tour of Inns to charity representatives, Billi Hasemyer of the Love Center Food Pantry, Marion Crane of Life Care Hospice of Holmes and Wayne Counties, and Kurt Kleidon of Kleidon and Associates representing the University of Akron’s School of Nutrition and Dietetics. Checks totaled more than $8,000 to each organization.

“We have reached a milestone,” said Cookie Tour Chairperson Loretta Coblentz. “In six years of hosting the Christmas Cookie Tour of Inns, we have donated more than $75,000 to charity.”

Twelve inns of Amish Country presented the ultimate gingerbread extravaganza as they celebrated six years of Christmas confections during the event on Sunday and Monday, Dec. 8 and 9, 2013.  More than 1,350 visitors from across Ohio and adjoining states enjoyed delicious cookies as they toured through gingerbread-themed inns. On their self-guided tour, guests received a specialty cookie at each inn, many being variations of gingerbread cookies. The delectable delights included a Pumpkin Ginger Chocolate Chip Cookie, a Pennsylvania Dutch Light Ginger Cookie, and a Cut-Out Gingerbread Man Cookie.

Inns on tour presented a journey of irresistible gingerbread wonderlands. The Barn Inn displayed a beautifully-decorated dining table dressed with tiny gingerbread houses atop teacups. The Berlin Grande Hotel showcased an eight-foot gingerbread house in the lobby of the hotel where Mrs. Claus welcomed visitors. A jolly gingerbread man and gingerbread woman greeted guests at the Grapevine House. The Berlin Hotel and Suites, Carlisle Inn Sugarcreek, Carlisle Inn Walnut Creek, Comfort Suites Berlin, Ferngully Creek, Guggisberg Swiss Inn, Hannah’s House B&B, Lodging on the Square, and Wallhouse Hotel all welcomed guests to explore their beautifully decorated interiors.

An added treat on the tour this year were two elaborate gingerbread houses built by master builder, Dr. John Learner D.D.S. of Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio. Dr. Learner’s masterpieces were on display at the Carlisle Inn Walnut Creek and the Wallhouse Hotel. During the tour, guests had the opportunity to meet Dr. Learner and learn a few of his candification tips and tricks.

For the first year, the Cookie Tour Committee teamed up with the University of Akron’s School of Nutrition and Dietetics. A series of six gingerbread houses were designed and built by teams of students and professors in the University’s Coordinated Program, Food and Environmental Nutrition, and Student Dietetic Association. These houses were on display at inns during the tour and tour guests were invited to vote for their favorite house. In addition to the donation made to the University of Akron’s School of Nutrition and Dietetics to support their scholarship fund, the winning team of students from the Student Dietetic Association, won a $500 cash prize. Following the Cookie Tour, the six houses built by the University of Akron teams were donated for display at Akron Children’s Hospital.

The Amish Country Lodging Council, operating under the auspices of the Holmes County Chamber of Commerce, is dedicated to excellence in hospitality and “embraces the concept of giving back to the community,” said Coblentz. “Christmas is about love and sharing. Cookies are a delicious vehicle to deliver that love. It is our mission to showcase our lovely inns, while at the same time bless our wonderful charity partners who provide care at a time when it is most desperately needed. On behalf of our hospitality partners, supporting businesses, vendors, and volunteers, we thank you for your contribution to this very worthy cause.”

To view photos of the 2013 tour, search #cookietour 2013 and #gingersnap2013.

The 2014 inn-to-inn tour will be Sunday, Dec. 7 and Monday, Dec. 8. Tour information will be available at www.christmascookietour.com, facebook.com/christmascookietour, or by calling the Holmes County Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Bureau at 330-674-3975.

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Category: Arts & Entertainment

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