Nicole Manzo takes the cake in design contest

Nicole Manzo takes the cake in design contest

Nicole Manzo with her sketch; below, the finished cake

Maybe Fairmont High School junior Nicole Manzo doesn’t realize how talented she is. 

Earlier this year, Manzo responded to a plea from a soccer company official who needed a design for a cake to display at the 2011 National Soccer Coaches Association of America Convention in Baltimore. Manzo found out about this opportunity through her mother, who is a business associate of Gerald McLean, president of Tourney Central.  

“I was just about to give up and not do the cake, when I sent out a tweet asking if anyone could draw an idea of a crab fighting a soccer ball,” said McLean.

As strange as the request sounded, Manzo figured she’d give it a shot. “I just sketched it up in like five seconds,” she said. “I didn’t think it was that good, but apparently everyone loved it!” 

Charm City Cakes, which produces the television show Ace of Cakes on the Food Network, loved the sketch and used Manzo’s original sketch as the design for Tourney Central’s tournament cake in Baltimore.  In fact, the company was so pleased with the sketch that they autographed and framed the sketch and then gave it to Manzo.

Manzo, who is in the IB Art program at Fairmont, says she was very flattered that Charm City Cakes liked her sketch. “For Charm City to really like it was really an honor,” she said. “It’s very exciting for my sketch to be the inspiration of Tourney Central’s cake. Just to know that was my artwork makes me feel important and appreciated.”

McLean contacted Fairmont art teacher Susan Bennett about Manzo’s success. “We think that this is pretty cool and just wanted to say that one of your students changed the world just a little bit through her creativity and artistic skill,” said McLean.