Cake Decorating Community - Cakes We Bake

Need Feedback Please - Should we have a beginners only contest?

First, I want to thank everyone for their feedback about changing the Halloween contest end date. The date has been changed to November 1st, but not sure if people noticed.

Since the discussion turned once again to having separate categories for beginners and professionals, which the programming here does not allow right now, I thought we could have a beginners only contest next month. What do you all think about that? And how much experience do you think should be the cut off point?

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sounds like a good idea
I like Edna's idea of making by the number of cakes made rather than time decorating.
First of all I want to thank you for keeping this site going and for having the contests. I know it's a lot of work. Thank you!

I am a beginner and in the last contest (first I ever entered) I got 11 votes. I was thrilled! Even getting one person to say it looked good made me happy. It is a little intimidating to compete against the pros. So I think a beginners category would be awesome. Good luck making up the rules. It will be a challenge.
I would trust that whatever you decide to do will be fine Theresa.... You know me well enough to know that I am not a fan of the fighting and petty crap so hope it all works out and everyone is honest... and if not... it is their concious that they have to live with. It is always fun to see where people are. I myself like to see different levels of abilities. I believe that some are more naturally talented than others and things come easier for some than others so the amount of years has nothing to do with the amount of work done.
Here's one more thought. Is there a way to track the number of votes people get on your contests? What if people "earned" the title of expert, or intermediate decorator. Anyone who receives more than 30 votes in a contest could be considered expert, 20 votes for intermediate. May not even be possible to do it that way. It's just a thought.
Here's the issue with that: I still allow voting because everyone enjoys being involved, but I had to bring judges in for the final decision because votes were being generated from people telling their friends to vote for them on facebook.

This is what I think I'm going to do for the next contest. People who have made 30 cakes or less can enter. After the contest is over, everyone can give their input about how they think it went and then we'll decide if we'll do something like that again. But, I'm not going to allow arguing and nasty comments during the course of the contest. If people have something to say, they can send me a private message. We're testing it out to see how it goes. Everyone needs to accept that some people pick up the skills faster than others, so we're going to give everyone the benefit of the doubt that they're telling the truth about their experience level. If after the contest, too many people feel it didn't work, then that's that.

Marsha Pope said:
Here's one more thought. Is there a way to track the number of votes people get on your contests? What if people "earned" the title of expert, or intermediate decorator. Anyone who receives more than 30 votes in a contest could be considered expert, 20 votes for intermediate. May not even be possible to do it that way. It's just a thought.
Great idea. The cutoff should be under a year.

Thanks.
I have entered a few contest and honestly I don't expect to win because there are so many talented people. For me it is hard to vote on people's entries just because there are so many of them. But what I love about the contest is the number of ideas I get from seeing other people's cakes. I don't always have time to search everyone's pages and look for ideas, so whenever there is a contest I look through the entries to see what others are doing and have gotten some wonderful ideas. It might be good to take the contest aspect out of the mix and do things like "Show us your cupcakes"...etc. A lot of people have trouble with good sportsmanship these days. :-(

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