Sweet Potato Pie Contest announced by The Plain Dealer; judging Oct. 27

October 10, 2018

Sweet Potato Pie Contest announced by The Plain Dealer; judging Oct. 27

CLEVELAND, Ohio – Thanksgiving has many different meanings for Americans across the country. It is a time for families to reconnect, a time for thankfulness and a time to share wonderful food. And in many households, eating dessert is the best part of the Thanksgiving meal, especially when it comes to sweet potato pie. Sweet potato pie is a Southern dish and, according to blackamericaweb.com, the pie recipes made their cookbook debut in the 18th century. There are many different variations of the recipe and no two pies (from different bakers) taste the same. There’s so much pride in making a sweet potato pie that many claim that their mother, father, grandmother, grandfather, wife, husband, child, auntie, uncle, sister, brother, cousin or friend makes the best pie ever. So, now The Plain Dealer would like you to prove your pie is the best in our Plain Dealer Sweet Potato Pie Contest. 

We’ll name a Grand Prize winner as well as first-, second- and third-prize winners.  In addition to bragging rights, the Grand Prize winner will receive a selection of cookbooks, a gift certificate to Chicago’s Home of Chicken and Waffles in Downtown Cleveland, and we may feature you and your recipe in The Plain Dealer Taste Section.

First, second and third prizes are gift certificates to a local merchant in the amounts of $75, $50 and $25 each.

How to enter:

First, written entries, submitted by email or U.S. mail by Oct. 19, must include your name, address and phone number and sent to Branson Wright, The Plain Dealer, 1660 West 2nd Street, Suite 200, Cleveland, OH, 44113, or emailed to bwright@plaind.com.

Entries should be brief (no more than 600 words total) answers to these questions:

What makes your sweet potato pie the best?Where did the recipe come from?What can you tell us about yourself?

Second, entrants must bring their pies and recipes to Chicago’s Home of Chicken and Waffles, 1144 Prospect Ave E., Cleveland, between 10:30 and 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 27 for judging.


Full contest are posted below.

Contest starts 6:00 a.m. ET 10/10/18 and ends 4:00 p.m. ET 10/19/18. Open to legal residents of Cuyahoga, Geauga, Portage, Lake, Lorain, Medina or Summit counties Ohio 18 or older, except employees of judges or Sponsor, their immediate families and those living in the same household. Void outside Cuyahoga, Geauga, Portage, Lake, Lorain, Medina and Summit counties Ohio and where prohibited. A.R.V. of 1 grand prize is $300 UPDATE, 1 first prize $75, 1 second prize $50 and 1 third prize $25. Sponsor: The Plain Dealer.

SWEET POTATO PIE CONTEST ” (the “Promotion”)



A purchase will not improve chances of winning.


You have not yet won.




By entering this Promotion, entrants accept and agree to be bound by these Official Rules.  Any violation of these rules may, at Sponsor’s discretion, result in disqualification.  All decisions of the judges regarding this Promotion are final and binding in all respects.

1. Promotion Period: Promotion begins 6:00 AM ET Wednesday, October 10, 2018, and ends 4:00 PM ET Friday, October 19, 2018 (“Promotion Period”). Emailed entries must be received by the end of the Promotion Period.  Mail-in entries must be postmarked by the end of the promotion period and received no later than five (5) days later.  

2. Eligibility. This Promotion is only open to legal residents of Cuyahoga, Geauga, Portage, Lake, Lorain, Medina or Summit counties Ohio who are at least 18 years old as of the date of entry, except officers, directors, members and employees of the Sponsor, the judging organizations, or any other party associated with the development or administration of this Promotion, and the immediate family (i.e., parents, children, siblings, spouse), and persons residing in the same household, as such individuals. This Promotion is void outside the Cuyahoga, Geauga, Portage, Lake, Lorain, Medina and Summit counties Ohio, and where prohibited.

3. How to Enter: Step 1. During the Promotion Period submit your name, address and phone number and answers to the following questions (no more than 200 words each):

a) What makes your sweet potato pie the best;  

b) Where the recipe come from? and;

c) What can you tell us about yourself?


Email this material to bwright@plaind.com or mail it via US post to Branson Wright, Sweet Potato Pie Contest, The Plain Dealer, 1660 West 2nd Street, Suite 200, Cleveland, OH, 44113.  Step 2.  Entrants must bring a finished pie along with the recipe (Type or Print all ingredients with measured quantities and step-by-step directions) to Chicago’s Home of Chicken and Waffles, 1144 Prospect Ave E., Cleveland, between 10:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. ET Saturday, October 27, 2018 to be judged in a live event.  Your name, address, phone number, question answers and the baked pie shall be deemed your “Submission”.  Entrants must complete Step 1 and 2 to be eligible. Entrants represent and warrant that their Submission is the original work of such entrant, it has not been copied from others, and it does not violate the rights of any other person or entity. Entrant further represents and warrants that their Submission adheres to the fundamental spirit of the Promotion and does not contain any defamatory, obscene or otherwise unlawful matter or depict anyone engaged in any illegal, immoral or lewd act, any violent or pornographic material or contain any other inappropriate content (as determined by Sponsor).  Limit: One entry per person and one entry per e-mail address during the Promotion Period.  All entrant information, including e-mail addresses, is subject to the respective Privacy Policy of the applicable Sponsor.

4. Winner Selection and Notification.  All Submissions will be judged at the event on Saturday, October 27, 2018, by a panel of judges comprised of members of the food, education, athletic and media community.  The judges will score all pies first based on appearance.  No more than Sixty (60) pies that score the highest will move on to the next round where judges will then evaluate each entry based on Taste (60%), Originality of the Recipe (10%), the Written Answers to our entry questions (10%) and Appearance (20%).  The four (4) entries with highest overall score will be declared the potential Grand Prize Winner, First, Second and Third prize winner (in the event of a tie, the entry with the higher score in the Taste criteria will prevail). Any potential winner will be notified by mail, email and/or telephone. If a potential winner: (i) cannot be contacted; (ii) does not respond within three (3) days from the date the Sponsor first tries to notify him/her; (iii) fails to return the Affidavit and Release as specified in Rule 9; (iv) refuses the prize; and/or (v) the prize or prize notification is returned as undeliverable, such potential winner forfeits all rights to win the Promotion or receive the prize, and an alternate potential winner may be selected.  Upon contacting a potential winner and determining that he/she has met all eligibility requirements of the Promotion, including without limitation the execution of required waivers, publicity and liability releases and disclaimers, and, at Sponsor’s discretion, successful completion of a background check, such individual will be declared the “winner” of the Promotion.

5. Prize description:  The  Grand Prize is a selection of cook books (ARV $200) and a $100 gift certificate to  Chicago’s Home of Chicken and Waffles. The total approximate retail value of the Grand Prize package is $200.  The first prize is one $75 gift certificate to a local merchant.  The second prize is a $50 gift certificate to a local merchant and the third prize is a $25 gift certificate to a local merchant.  All gift certificates may be subject to certain restrictions including expiration date.  Winning entries may, at sponsor’s discretion be featured in a future issue of The Plain Dealer or on Cleveland.com.  If sponsor opts to publish a feature, winners must agree to the publication of the recipe, having their photo taken and to be interviewed for a story.

6. Taxes.  All federal, state and/or local income and other taxes, if any, are the winner’s sole responsibility.

7. Ownership And License. All entry materials become the property of the Sponsor and will not be acknowledged or returned.  The copyright in any Submission shall remain the property of the entrant, but entry into this Promotion constitutes entrant’s irrevocable and perpetual permission and consent, without further compensation, with or without attribution, to use, reproduce, print, publish, transmit, distribute, sell, perform, adapt, enhance, or display such Submission, and the entrant’s name and/or likeness, for any purpose, including but not limited to editorial, advertising, trade, commercial, and publicity purposes by the Sponsor and/or others authorized by the Sponsor, in any and all media now in existence or hereinafter created, throughout the world, for the duration or the copyright in the Submission.  Sponsor and/or others authorized by the Sponsor shall have the right to edit, adapt, and modify the Submission.

8. No Prize Transfer or Substitution. No prize or any portion thereof is transferable or redeemable for cash.  No substitutions for prize except by Sponsor, in which case a prize of equal or greater value will be substituted.

9. Consent and Release.  By entering the Promotion, each entrant releases and discharges the Sponsor, judging organization (if applicable), and any other party associated with the development or administration of this Promotion, their parent, subsidiary, and affiliated entities, and each of their respective officers, directors, members, shareholders, employees, independent contractors, agents, representatives, successors and assigns (collectively, “Sponsor Entities”), from any and all liability whatsoever in connection with this Promotion, including without limitation legal claims, costs, injuries, losses or damages, demands or actions of any kind (including without limitation personal injuries, death, damage to, loss or destruction or property, rights of publicity or privacy, defamation, or portrayal in a false light) (collectively, “Claims”).  Except where prohibited: (i) entry into the Promotion constitutes the consent of each entrant, without further compensation, to use his/her name, likeness, biographical data, contact information and his/her Submission for editorial, advertising, marketing, publicity, and administrative purposes by the Sponsor and/or others authorized by the Sponsor; (ii) acceptance of a prize constitutes a release by any winner of the Sponsor Entities of any and all Claims in connection with the administration of this Promotion and the use, misuse, or possession of his/her Submission or any prize; (iii) any potential winner may be required to sign an affidavit of eligibility (including Social Security number) and a liability/publicity/copyright release; and (iv) if prize involves travel or activities, any potential winner and travel companion (if applicable) may be required to execute releases of the Sponsor from any and all liability with respect to participation in such travel/activities and/or use of the prize.  Fully-executed affidavits and releases must be received by Sponsor within three (3) days from the date that Sponsor first tries to notify the potential winner. Sponsor may conduct a background check to confirm any potential winner’s eligibility and compliance with these rules.  By entering, you agree to cooperate reasonably with any such background check. If the prize includes participation in any public event(s) or publicity, or if Sponsor Entities intend to publicize the winner in any way, and if a background check reveals that a potential winner has engaged in conduct that could damage the reputation or business of any Sponsor Entity, as determined by Sponsor in its discretion, the potential winner may be disqualified and the prize may be awarded to an alternate winner.  

10. Disclaimers.  (i) Sponsor not responsible for entries that are lost, late, misdirected, incorrect, garbled, postage-due, or incompletely received, for any reason, including by reason of hardware, software, browser, or network failure, malfunction, congestion, or incompatibility at Sponsor’s servers or elsewhere.  In the event of a dispute, entries will be deemed submitted by the authorized account holder of the e-mail address submitted at the time of entry.  “Authorized account holder” is defined as the natural person who is assigned to an e-mail address by an Internet Access Provider, online service provider, or other organization (e.g., business, educational institute) that is responsible for assigning e-mail addresses for the domain associated with the submitted e-mail address.  (ii) Sponsor, in its sole discretion, reserves the right to disqualify any person tampering with the entry process or otherwise attempting to undermine the legitimate operation of the Promotion.  Use of bots or other automated process to enter is prohibited and may result in disqualification at the sole discretion of Sponsor.  (iii) Sponsor further reserves the right to cancel, terminate or modify the Promotion if it is not capable of completion as planned, including by reason of infection by computer virus, bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, force majeure or technical failures of any sort.  (iv) Sponsor Entities are not responsible for errors in the administration or fulfillment of this Promotion, including without limitation mechanical, human, printing, distribution or production errors, and may cancel, terminate or modify this Promotion based upon such error at its sole discretion without liability.  In no event will Sponsor be responsible for awarding more than the number of prizes specified in these rules.  (v) In the event this Promotion is cancelled or terminated, pursuant to subparagraph (iii) or (iv), Sponsor, in its sole discretion, may elect to select a winner from among all eligible entries received up to the date of discontinuance for any or all of the prizes offered herein.  (vi) Sponsor entities make no warranties, representations or guarantees, express or implied, in fact or in law, as regards this promotion or the merchantability, quality or fitness for a particular purpose regarding any prize or any component of any prize.  (Vii) Caution: any attempt by an entrant to deliberately damage the website or undermine the legitimate operation of this promotion may be a violation of criminal and/or civil laws, and should such an attempt be made, sponsor reserves the right to seek remedies and damages (including without limitation attorneys’ fees) from any such entrant to the fullest extent of the law, including criminal prosecution. (viii) The value(s) of the prize(s) set forth above represent Sponsor’s good faith determination of the approximate retail value(s) thereof; the actual fair market value(s) as ultimately determined by Sponsor are final and binding and cannot be challenged or appealed.  In the event the stated approximate retail value(s) of a prize is more than the actual fair market value of that prize, the difference will not be awarded in cash or otherwise.  No substitution or compensation will be given for any portion of the prize that is not used.

11. Applicable Laws and Jurisdiction.  This Promotion is subject to all applicable federal, state, and local laws and regulations. If any court of law, having the jurisdiction to decide on this matter, rules that any provision of these Official Rules is invalid or unenforceable, then that provision will be removed from the Official Rules, and the remaining provisions of these Official Rules will remain in full force and effect.  Issues concerning the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Official Rules shall be governed by the laws of the State of Ohio without regard to any principles of conflict of laws.  All disputes arising out of or connected with this Promotion will be resolved individually, and without resort to class action, exclusively by a state or federal court located in Cleveland, Ohio. Should there be a conflict between the laws of the State of Ohio and any other laws, the conflict will be resolved in favor of the laws of the State of Ohio. To the extent permitted by applicable law, all judgments or awards shall be limited to actual out-of-pocket damages (excluding attorneys’ fees) associated with participation in this Promotion and shall not include any indirect, punitive, incidental and/or consequential damages.

12. Winner List.  For a list containing the names of the winners, send a self-addressed stamped envelope, within six (6) months of the Judging Date, to:  Winner List, “Sweet Potato Pie Contest, The Plain Dealer, 4800 Tiedman Road, Cleveland, OH 44144.

13. Sponsorship. This Promotion is sponsored by The Plain Dealer, 4800 Tiedman Road, Cleveland, OH 44144 (the “Sponsor”).