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Calling All Bakers: Maine’s Best Bakers Scheduled for Nov. 4

Community Author: Shelby Hartin
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(PORTLAND, ME) Oct. 9, 2017 – The first annual Maine’s Best Bakers presented by The Hemophilia Alliance of Maine is scheduled to take place Nov. 4 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Ocean Gateway in Portland.

Registration is free for vendors, who will be granted a table at the event to sell their wares. Vendors also get to keep all proceeds from selling their items at the event in exchange for providing 250 free mouthfuls of their best cookie, cupcake, or donut for attendees. Professional and home bakers alike are welcome to participate as vendors in this event, which is a great opportunity to secure new customers for the holiday season.

Admission for attendees 13 and over is $5 at the door and includes 5 tokens for tastes and one voting token (5 additional taste tokens can be purchased for $1). Tokens will be collected at each vendors’ table and later counted to determine the populous vote. The winner of the populous vote will receive a $100 cash prize.

Celebrity judges, including Alex Steed, partner and producer at Knack Factory, will vote to award one deserving baker the title “Maine’s Best Baker,” a $250 cash prize, and a trophy. Judges will also vote for best cake, cookie, and doughnut and each winner will receive a $150 cash prize. All winners will be featured in a 2018 cookbook published by The Hemophilia Alliance of Maine and an ad in the Portland Press Herald, which will run the week following the event.

“I am so excited about this new event. The Hemophilia Alliance of Maine is committed to creating a long-term event that does two unique things: first, it brings much needed attention to the bleeding disorders community; second, like the brew culture that already exists in Maine, it supports our awesome food culture that exists by connecting home bakers with the larger community,” said Jill Packard, Executive Director of the Hemophilia Alliance of Maine.

The Hemophilia Alliance of Maine (HAM), was founded in 2010 and is a chapter of the National Hemophilia Foundation. Their mission is to create support, programming, and advocacy for Maine’s unique rural bleeding disorders population.

Bleeding disorders are caused when the body lacks a gene which can properly manufacture certain blood proteins called clotting factors. Having a bleeding disorder can be a very serious condition that often requires treatment and lifestyle modification. The most common clotting factors to be missing are Factor VIII, and Factor XI, which cause hemophilia A and hemophilia B, respectively. The most common bleeding disorder is von Willebrand’s syndrome, which is caused by the missing von Willebrand factor, which helps platelets stick to damaged vessel walls.

Packard has been a part of the bleeding disorders community since 2008 when her son was born with a bleeding disorder.  

“Raising a son affected by a bleeding disorder has been challenging, but less challenging than it could have been without a community of support. Infusions of medication every other day are not easy on a squirming kid!  The people and families connected to our community organization make the load so much easier to carry. I can’t imagine where we’d be without them,” said Packard.

In the first year of Maine’s Best Bakers, HAM hopes to build a partnership between the hemophilia community and the baking community in Maine. All proceeds from the event will benefit HAM programs in Maine, which are aimed at creating a supportive community for people with bleeding disorders.

Additional opportunities for participating vendors include ad space in the event program guide. If potential vendors have additional questions about the event or ad space, they should contact Jill Packard at jill@mainehemophilia.org or 207-992-3822. Additional event details are available at https://www.mainesbestbakers.com/. Vendors who would like to sign up for the event should register at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/maines-best-bakers-vendor-registration-tickets-36838348492.

The Hemophilia Alliance of Maine’s mission is to assist and enhance the quality of life for Maine’s people and families who have a bleeding disorder. For more information, visit http://www.mainehemophilia.org/.