11th annual Melita Day Cookie Walk slated for Saturday

By Hope Lecchi - [email protected]

By Hope Lecchi

[email protected]

Two Sedalia holiday traditions will occur Saturday, both designed with young and old in mind.

The Sedalia Area Chamber of Commerce Christmas parade is set to begin at 10 a.m. on Ohio Avenue. Before attending the parade, visions of sugar cookies and other sweet treats may be dancing in the minds of many area residents as they prepare to attend the 11th annual Melita Day Cookie Walk.

The event from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. will be in the Parkhurst Commons in the Stauffacher Center for the Performing Arts at State Fair Community College.

“I know we have all been busy baking,” Sally Keating, Melita Day Board member, said Monday morning. “I made five double batches of sugar cookies yesterday alone.

“I keep it in the refrigerator until I bake them,” Keating added. “I don’t know if others are like I am about this but I would rather mix them all up at one time and make one big mess than spread it out over a lot of days,” Keating said with a laugh.

Not only has Keating made her sugar cookies, but she has also stirred up three batches of gingerbread and one chocolate chip batch.

Keating said this year’s goal for the Melita Day board members to make is 400 pounds of cookies.

“We only have 12 members on the board so we invite others to help us bake,” Keating said. “You would be surprised the number of husbands and friends we enlist to help with the project.

“We truly do have a good time doing this,” Keating added. “Especially when we all get together tonight to decorate the sugar cookies.”

The bakers and their friends will meet at Community and Christ Church for a decorating “party.”

“Anne (Gardner) always makes the butter cream frosting,” Keating said. “It just makes the decorating so much fun when we are all together though.”

Last year Gardner made 30 pounds of frosting for the cookies, but not all of that is used by the members to decorate the cookies.

“We are offering our naked cookie kits again this year,” Keating said. “They seemed to be very popular last year when we first tried it so we thought we would offer them again.”

The kits contain a dozen sugar cookies that are not decorated. Individuals are given a container of frosting and sanding sugar or sprinkles to decorate the cookies as they want.

“The kits are $10 and it is a good idea for busy moms who don’t have the time to make the sugar cookies but still want the fun of decorating them with their children,” Keating said.

That is one of the benefits to the cookie walk, according to Keating.

“Everyone likes to bake, but maybe not 10 or 20 different varieties of cookies,” Keating said. “We have so many wonderful and unique cookies this year; I think we have something for everyone’s taste.”

Information sheets are available by each tray for individuals who have questions about the ingredients in the items.

“I really can’t say what my favorite ones are because there are so many to pick from,” Keating said. “I try to taste as many as I can because we do reserve the right to taste the broken ones,”

Some of the favorites from prior years include Shirley Evans’ shortbread cookies, Anne Gardner’s fruitcake bars and Alecia Farkas’ Hungarian Christmas cookies.

“Alecia’s family name is Hungarian and one of her daughters had written an essay on the family history,” Keating said. “They thought it would be fun to find a traditional recipe to make together for the event.

“Alecia is the chairman of the event and every year she does a wonderful job to make sure everything is done,” Keating added. “We have such a good time especially because it benefits such a good cause.”

Proceeds from the event are given to Melita Day Child Development Center to offset the cost of the day care facility.

“We are just so indebted to everyone,” Keating said. “Especially the students in the nursing department and early childhood care programs at SFCC and the National Honor Society at Sacred Heart who always help us the day of the event.

“I can’t say enough either for all the individuals who come and purchase the cookies from us,” Keating added. “It truly does help support a wonderful cause.”

Cookies are $9 per pound with the exception of the naked cookie kits, which are $10. Individuals are encouraged to arrive early for the best selection.

Hope Lecchi can be reached at 660-826-1000 ext. 1484

Hope Lecchi can be reached at 660-826-1000 ext. 1484

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