Sunday, June 10, 2012

Press Release: Communications Teacher from Winter Springs, Fl Takes Best of Show in Amateur Division of 18th Annual APC/Crisco® National Pie Championships

ORLANDO (June 5, 2012) - The competition among amateur bakers was even hotter this year at the 18th Annual APC/Crisco® National Pie Championships held April 27-29 in Orlando as hundreds of pie makers fought for First Place bragging rights and prize money in 17 pie categories as well as the coveted Best of Show award. Of the 801 total pie entries in Commercial, Professional, Amateur and Junior Chef divisions, 237 were from amateur bakers. The pies were judged by 195 pre-qualified volunteer chefs, bakers and assorted pie aficionados.

The 17 Amateur categories included Apple, Cherry, Crisco® Classic Chocolate Cream, Citrus, Cream, Custard, Fruit & Berry, Gluten Free, Innovation, Nut, Open, Peanut Butter, Cream Cheese, Pumpkin, Raisin (sponsored by the California Raisin Marketing Board), No Sugar Added and Sweet Potato.

John Sunvold of Winter Springs, Fla., a speech communications teacher at Seminole State College, took Best of Show for his cream category entry, Peg's Banana Cream Supreme Pie, as well as first place in the apple category for his The Apple of My Eye Pie. Sunvold won Best of Show in 2008, his first year in the competition, for his U.S. Route 1 Florida Key Lime with Maine Blueberries Pie. The Best of Show winner in each division is selected among first place winners in each flavor category.

Amateur division Best of Show winner "Peg's Banana Cream Supreme Pie" 

Sunvold created the pie based on a favorite dessert he enjoyed as a child and has worked on perfecting the recipe for three years. "Since the ingredients make it a top-heavy pie and the graham cracker crust doesn't offer much support, I really had to work to perfect the recipe," Sunvold explained.

"Each year, my sister comes down from Chicago to compete with me. Last year, I entered this pie, but we ran out of room in the refrigerator so I never ended up submitting it," he recalled. "My wife, Peg, scolded me for submitting other pies over this one, so I let her choose the name for this year's entry, which is where Peg's Banana Cream Supreme comes from."

Linda Hoskins, APC's executive director, was once again delighted to see the nation's most passionate bakers put forth their best creations for the competition. "One might argue that the Amateur division is the heart of this competition because these are the folks who make pie simply for the passion and enjoyment of baking," she said. "We are so thankful that each year, amateur bakers come from all over the United States to share in the camaraderie, the competition and the pure love of pie."
First place winners in the Amateur division include:
  • Apple, John Sunvold, Orlando, Fla., The Apple of My Eye
  • Cherry, Evette Rahman, Orlando, Fla., My Cherry Amour Pie
  • Crisco® Classic Chocolate Cream, Jeanne Ely, Mulberry, Fla., Lovers Pie
  • Citrus, Bev Johnson, Minn., Summer Breeze Pie
  • Best of Show and First Place, Cream, John Sunvold, Orlando, Fla., Peg's Banana Cream Supreme Pie
  • Custard, Pat Lapiezo, La Mesa, Calif., Raspberry Almond Bliss Custard Pie
  • Fruit & Berry, Carol Socier, Bay City, Minn., Blast of Berries Fruit Combo Pie
  • Gluten Free, Cordella LaRoe, Eustis, Fla., 3 Cheese Pumpkin Pie
  • Innovation, Evette Rahman, Orlando, Fla., Strawberry Kiwi Green Tea Pie
  • Nut, Savannah Kreinhagen, Palm Bay, Fla., Sweet Southern Pecan Pie
  • Open, Pat Lapiezo, La Mesa, Calif., Salted Caramel Mocha Crunch Pie
  • Peanut Butter, Janet Ropp, Edgewater, Fla., Savannah Daydreamin'
  • Cream Cheese, Grace Thatcher, Delta, Ohio, Drop Dead Gorgeous Strawberry Pie
  • Pumpkin, Alberta Dunbar, San Diego, Calif., Pumpkin Chocolate Surprise Pie
  • Raisin, Francine Bryson, Pickens, S.C., White Chocolate Raisin Nut Pie
  • No Sugar Added, Carol Socier, Bay City, Mich., Jerry's Favorite Creamy Strawberry/Banana Pie
  • Sweet Potato, Jennifer Nystrom, Morrow, Ohio, Maple Pecan Sweet Potato Pie

The Best of Show winner for the Professional division was Susan Boyle of DeBary, Fla. for her Coffee Toffee Crunch a Bunch Pie, a recipe created in honor of her late father, a coffee shop owner, while first-time participant 14-year-old Ana Ramirez of Polk City, Fla. took Best of Show in the Junior Chef division for her Spider Monkey Peanut Butter Pie. Of the Commercial bakery entries, Bakers Square swept the competition with a total of 30 wins. A complete list of winners is available at

Next year's competition is scheduled for April 26-28, 2013 at the Caribe Royal Orlando.

Each year, the National Pie Championships are held in conjunction with the free-admission Great American Pie Festival which features the Never Ending Pie Buffet. This year's festival was attended by close to 39,000 pie lovers, up from 32,000 last year, and featured an even more endless pie buffet with a mind-boggling 90,000 slices.

The American Pie Council offers individual membership for amateurs as well as professionals and commercial bakers. Pie lovers receive multiple benefits including the "Pie Times" e-newsletter, membership directory and member-only online "pie talk" access for idea exchange, pie recipes, coupons and discounted entry into the annual APC/Crisco® National Pie Championships. For more details, to become a member of the APC or to register for the National Pie Championships, visit

Crisco® is a registered trademark of The J. M. Smucker Company. For more information, visit

The American Pie Council® is the only organization committed to maintaining America's pie heritage, passing on the tradition of pie-making and promoting America's love affair with pie. The APC offers personal, professional and commercial memberships. For more information, please visit

Kevin Yee is the author of numerous independent Disney books, including the popular Walt Disney World Earbook series and Walt Disney World Hidden History.