An Illinois country club chef has created a 400-pound replica of Wrigley Field to commemorate the Cubs' World Series win.

By Alex Heigl
Updated December 08, 2020 11:09 AM
Credit: Paul Beaty/AP

Gerald Madero is the head chef at Rockford, Illinois’ Forest Hills Country Club, but that wasn’t always his gig.

Until six years ago, he was a carpenter, which gave him the experience he needed to build his latest masterpiece: A 4’x4′ gingerbread house replica of Wrigley Field.

“Not having those skills probably would have made it almost impossible,” Madero told the Rockford Star.

“Every year we do a display,” he explained. “We were just kicking around ideas and everybody thought it would be cool if we did Wrigley Field. I said I could totally do that. I love the challenge. The Cubs win is just the perfect thing — 108 years. What could be better?”

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Every aspect of the 400-pound-plus structure is edible, except for the players — they’re Legos. But the team dedicated 70 hours and two weeks to making sure the rest of the Field is up for snacking: Gelatin windows, an edible paper scoreboard, seats made out of crackers, cookies for the floor icing trim and jelly candies for the flags.

Video: Building the Gingerbread White House

The mini-Wrigley will be on display until New Year’s Day, at which point Madero said, “and then we just trash it.”

Oddly enough, the chef didn’t pick gingerbread until three years ago when he came to Forest Hills and its yearly Gingerbread Brunch. But he’s perfected it since arriving, even if he doesn’t take his work home with him. “I really don’t have the time,” he said. “I’m literally there 70 hours a week. I don’t have time for all of that.”