Sandy Oxx presents award for PEEPshow first and grand prizes.
Size mattered as the largest sculpture, "Mother of (Peeps) Dragons," took home the grand prize at the 10th annual PEEPshow at the Carroll Arts Center in Westminster.
The Carroll County Arts Council hosted its concluding ceremony Wednesday for the PEEPshow, which has brought tourists and residents to the Arts Center to check out more than 150 Peep-inspired pieces of art over the past 10 days.
Vivian Davis' sculpture of an 81/2-foot-tall dragon with a 6-foot wingspan featured more than 5,000 Peeps and earned 7,702 votes.
This year, voting was split between in-person and online, where viewers were invited to donate a dollar to the arts council in exchange for a voice in choosing what the top Peep piece would be.
According to Sandy Oxx, executive director of the Carroll County Arts Council, online voting took off in the final minutes of the PEEPshow, with about $2,000 coming in with less than 10 minutes until the polls were closed.
This year, the PEEPshow saw more than 25,000 visitors over the 10-day period visiting each of the sculptures within.
Davis said she was thrilled to take home the grand prize, determined by a combination of in-person and online voting. She said she began working on the dragon's armature after Christmas, but didn't apply her first Peep to the final piece until March 14.
"I'm a big fan of 'Game of Thrones' and I just love dragons," Davis said. "It was the 10th year, and the shoe I made last year was big, but I wanted to make something really big to honor it."
Davis thanked her family for putting up with what turned into eight-hour work days in the weeks prior to the PEEPshow as well as her sponsors Kim Fitzgerald and TutoringArt.com. For the grand prize, Davis won a giant plush bunny; a special VIPeeps visit to Just Born, the maker of PEEPS in Bethlehem, Pa.; and an overnight stay at the Historic Hotel Bethlehem.
The PEEPshow is a fundraiser for the Carroll County Arts Council and visitors' votes will select the Grand Prize Winner and Audience Favorites. As of Sunday afternoon, the show had attracted 19,000 visitors.