Wisconsin's Cake Decorating Championship

We are looking for Wisconsin's most creative cake artists!

The Wisconsin Bakers Association is proud to partner once again with the Wisconsin Grocers Association to present Wisconsin's Cake Decorating Championship at the 2023 Grocers Innovation Expo being held at the Hilton Paper Valley Hotel & Fox Cities Convention Center in Appleton on October 18, 2023.

This year’s competition features two categories:

  • Smash Cakes showcasing a “Lil Monster” theme

  • 3D Cakes showcasing a “Spooky Stories” theme

Registration & Entry Fees:

The early registration deadline for all of the competitions is Wednesday, September 20, 2023. The standard registration deadline is Wednesday, October 4, 2023. All entries must be registered in advance. Each entry includes two passes to the WGA Grocery Industry Trade Show on Wednesday, October 18, 2023. Space is limited!

All entries must be registered in advance. Late entries may be allowed if space permits but will be charged a $50 late fee per entry.

  • Early – WBA and WGA Members – $30

  • Early – Non-Member – $45

  • Standard – WBA and WGA Members – $45

  • Standard – Non-Member – $60

Skill Levels:

  • Wisconsin’s Cake Decorating Championship is open to beginners/students (up to 3 years’ experience) and professionals (3+ years’ experience). 

  • Competitors must represent an independent licensed bakery facility, grocery store, or be currently enrolled in a baking/pastry arts college program.


  • “Lil Monster” Smash Cakes – A little monster is celebrating a first birthday and it’s up to you to design a Lil Monster themed Smash Cake for the occasion! Smash cakes may be iced in any type of icing. Real cake must be used for this category. Decorations may be fondant, butter cream, gum paste, royal icing, isomalt, or chocolate. Cake should not be larger than 6” tall by 6” diameter” excluding decorations. Click here to view a blank score sheet for this competition.

  • “Spooky Stories” 3D Shaped/Sculpted Cakes – Did you know that Appleton is a world renowned paper industry? The Fox River provided the needed power for the first mills in the area, which were flour and woolen mills that were later converted to paper production. The early giants of the paper industry, Kimberly-Clark, Appleton Papers, Wisconsin Tissue, now part of Georgia-Pacific, and Menasha Corporation, have earned this area it’s nickname, the Paper Valley. To tie in to the unique origin story of the location for this year’s Innovation Expo, the theme for the 3D Shaped/Sculpted Cake category is “Spooky Stories!” Cut-out, shaped, or sculpted cake, iced in any type of icing, fondant, or modeling chocolate. You must use real cake for this category. If there is any question about a portion of the cake being real, a judge may use a toothpick to check. Alternatively, competitors may provide up to 5 photos of the baking & assembly process. Photos may be brought along or emailed 72 hours in advance of the competition to jessica@wibakers.com. Up to 15% Rice Krispy or other edible ingredients are allowed. Only edible decorations and embellishments are allowed. Use of inedible decorations may result in a penalty score or disqualification. Finished decorated cake should not be larger than 24” x 24” x 24”. Click here to view a blank score sheet for this competition.


  • This year’s competition features two categories:

    • Smash Cakes showcasing a “Lil Monster” theme

    • 3D Cakes showcasing a “Spooky Stories” theme 

  • Cakes may be set-up on Tuesday, October 17th between 4:00 - 4:30 pm and on Wednesday, October 18th between 9:00 - 10:00 am. Judging will begin promptly at 10:00 am. Any cakes delivered after 10:00 am will not be judged but placed for display purposes only. 

  • A short anonymous description of each entry is encouraged but not required. The purpose of this description is to better inform the judges of the entrant’s vision, process, materials and technique that may not be obvious from viewing the finished product. This is also where any specific theme or backstory of an entry can be briefly explained. If including a description, please bring along a typed/printed copy to display next to your entry (250 words or less) or email your description 72 hours in advance of the competition to jessica@wibakers.com. This document will be available for review during the judging process. Please do not include any competitor or organization name(s) anywhere in the summary. Any photos showing competitor faces will be discarded.

  • Competitors and assistants should pick-up name badges at registration desk prior to entering the trade show floor. 

  • All work will be done in a professional manner.

  • Entries must be exclusive work of the entrant and may not have been entered in any other competition.

  • No business identifying marks, advertisements, or photos will be allowed until the completion of the judging. Sharing progress or preview photos or videos of entries publicly on social media is prohibited. After judging is complete, business cards may be placed by the cakes and photos or videos may be shared on social media. 

  • Cakes must stay on display until the end of the trade show (4:00 pm). Cake pick-up is between 4:00 pm and 5:00 pm.  Anything left will be disposed of. We are not responsible to return items to competitors! No exceptions.

  • All work must be done offsite. No decorating tools, equipment, cake, icing, base, stand, or materials will be provided by the competition, aside from table space for display. Cake must be already baked, assembled, decorated, and ready for viewing when participants arrive. Minimal adjustments, repair, and additions of embellishments will be permitted within the allotted set-up window.

  • Cakes are judged only on appearance.  Points will be given for neatness, originality, creativity, colors, and degree of difficulty. 

  • All flowers, if any, must be handmade by the competitor. 

  • Entries must be exclusive work of the entrant and may not have been entered in any previous WBA competitions.

  • Only individual entries are allowed. Team entries are not allowed.

  • Cakes must not infringe the copyright, trademark, privacy, publicity or other intellectual property rights of any person or entity. Cakes that violate this requirement will be disqualified from the competition.

  • The organizers have the right to use photographs taken of competitor’s displays.

  • A license and/or student ID number is required.


  • Entries in each skills division are judged separately.

  • Judging of the entries will be completed by a team of qualified judges selected by the Wisconsin Bakers Association. The judges’ decisions will be final. The judges will complete a score sheet for each entry.

  • WBA will provide copies of all professional judging scores to all entrants within 10 business days following the completion of WGA’s Grocery Industry Trade Show via your pre-registered e-mail address.


  • Cake decorating awards may include: Grand Champion, Reserve Champion, Award of Excellence, Award of Distinction, Award of Achievement, Honorable Mention, and Judge's Choice.

  • Announcements of awards is TBD.

  • People’s Choice will be announced at the WGA’s Chairman’s Banquet.

Wisconsin’s Cake Decorating Championship is held in conjunction with the WGA Innovation Expo and is presented in partnership between the Wisconsin Bakers Association (WBA) and the Wisconsin Grocers Association (WGA).  By entering the competition, the contestant fully releases all rights to photos, publication and other sources of media for all work produced exclusively for, during and in the complete time frame of the event.  Contestant is subject to all registration fees, applicable taxes, and all other related expenses on behalf of him/her entering the above competition.  Contestant agrees to abide by all rules set forth by the WBA for this competition. Contestant understands that the WBA, WGA, or any sponsors assume no responsibility for loss, theft or damage to displays or personal items at the WGA Innovation Expo and agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the WBA, WGA, and all sponsors from and against all claims, demands, costs, loss, damage, expense, attorney’s fees and liabilities growing out of, or arising from, caused or occasioned by his/her/their activities in the competition.  Competition entry fees are non-refundable.  All judges’ decisions are final.

Do you have any questions about Wisconsin’s Cake Decorating Championship?

Contact us by email at info@wibakers.com or call (414) 258-5552 for more information!

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