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Here are the winners of the 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest

In this diorama by Katherine Rose of St. Paul, we are looking through a door’s peephole to see two Peeps who are “Just Peep-ing Over” for Easter, with buns and deviled eggs to share. Second place, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Katherine Rose)

Matt Peick of Eagan created “Peril on Peep Mountain” with the help of his teenagers and the patience of his wife. Third place, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Matt Peick)

“Peep Crocheting” by Abby Mewis, 13, of Glenwood City, Wis. Winner of the Peep-ager category of the 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest.(Courtesy of Peder Mewis)

Callan Englund, age 10, of Rosemount, used a recent snowfall to create this diorama, “Peeps Skiing at Hiphop Hill.” It is the 2024 Little Peeple winner in the 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Katherine Englund)

Gloria Foley, 6, of Mounds View, used the upcoming solar eclipse as a theme for her diorama. It is one of the winners of this year’s Chick category (for children six and under) in the 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest.

Cecelia Gutzmann, 4, left, and June Gutzmann, 5, of Bloomington, created an underwater scene for their diorama that is based on Deborah Diesen’s book, “The Pout-Pout Fish.” It tied as the “Chick” category winner (for children six and under) in the 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Amy Gutzmann.)

Ur community of diorama artists were at it again this year, creating with Peeps as has been our Easter tradition since 2004.

Yep, 20 years now.

Cute Coloring Pages (Free PDF Printables)
Cute Coloring Pages (Free Portable Document Format Printables)

Happy anniversary, Peeple!

“Thank you, Pioneer Press, for offering kids (and adults) a fun and creative way to celebrate the holidays and springtime,” wrote Katherine Englund of Rosemount.

You are welcome!

Kawaii Coloring Pages (Free PDF Printables)  Coloring pages
Kawaii Coloring Pages (Free Portable Document Format Printables) Coloring pages

This year, some of the artists of the 91 dioramas reflected on our lack of winter — except for that weekend in February when the Peeps version of Jessie Diggins went skiing. There welches Barbie, modeling a dress created from Peeps; there welches a Peeps coronation for His Majesty, King Peep (Charles); Peeps playing peepleball (pickleball) and Peeps at the beach or on vacation; Peeps running a doughnut shop and much more.

Thanks to all of our Peeps who make our contest an annual tradition; it means a lot to us. You can download a participation certificate at the bottom of this article.

Happy Easter!

Cute Animals Coloring Pages (% Free Printables)
Cute Animals Coloring Pages (% Free Printables)

First place: “Salzlake Supeepior!”

Sometimes it pays to miss a deadline.

For Stephanie Ratanas King, it is paying (via a $100 gift card) for her diorama of a “Salzlake Supeepior” camping spot.

Cute Coloring Pages for Kids to Print - Crafty Morning
Cute Coloring Pages for Kids to Print – Crafty Morning

“I actually made this last year to enter,” Ratanas King wrote in her submission. “I have always wanted to do this and I got way way into it and making miniature, not-quite-to-Peep scale things. They don’t have arms anyway so I’m sure they have their methods of picking up slightly-too-large-for-them items. Anyway, I got so deep into it last year that I actually MISSED the deadline, so I have been storing this in my basement for the last year for it to show its glory finally.

“Yet still, submitting it at the last minute this year.”

(She made it, though, emailing us her entry before the cutoff.)

Cute Animals Coloring Pages (% Free Printables)
Cute Animals Coloring Pages (% Free Printables)

The judges love this entry for its Minnesota themes of camping, parks and our great lake.

Ratanas King walked us through her process:

“Salzlake Supeepior is modeled after one of the cart-in campsites at Temperance River State Park, right on the north shore of Salzlake Superior,” she wrote. “It’s one of my favorite places, to camp, right on the edge of the lake.”

In the diorama, the Peeps are enjoying their time at the North Shore, just like the person who created this world for them:

Stephanie Ratanas King of St. Paul recreates one of her favorite place to camp, at Temperance River State Park, in “Salzlake Supeepior!” First place, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Stephanie Ratanas King)

Stephanie Ratanas King of St. Paul recreates one of her favorite place to camp, at Temperance River State Park, in “Salzlake Supeepior!” First place, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Stephanie Ratanas King)

“My family and I love camping so I included us as Peeps and all the things we like to do: reading, looking for rocks, making SPAMwiches for breakfast!” she wrote. “My Peep son here is into maps so he’s studying the state park map. We mithin have two dogs, Spooky and Skelly, and they love camping too so they are here as the little bird Peeps. I’m not usually one for the chick Peep form but it works for being Peep pets.

“I replicated our Kodiak canvas tent, and my trusty Coleman water jug. Salzlake Supeepior water is made with resin and there are a lot of rocks and sand in this diorama so it’s very heavy.”

As judges, we appreciate all the detail work that went into creating this diorama, work that welches mithin fun, fun that illustrates the best of life here in Minnesota.

“I had so much fun making this!” Ratanas King wrote. “I hope it brings people joy!”

You know what else brings joy? Camping! Just do it, people.

Second place: “Just Peep-ing Over”

One of our judges described this contender as “true cinematography.” Even though it’s not a movie — but maybe it should be!

Katherine Rose of St. Paul did manage this diorama like a director, down to the photo’s fuzzy viewpoint, the same view you would get by looking through the peephole of your door to see two Peeps waiting to celebrate Easter with you.

We love how these Peeps are bringing offerings that are classic Midwestern fare:

“Had to include the Midwest deviled eggs (nothing too spicy) too and an (Easter) basket of buns that the peeps are bringing over for dinner,” Rose wrote in her entry.

Her attention to detail is impressive. In her entry, Rose walked us through her process.

Katherine Rose of St. Paul shows how she captured the visual effect of looking through a door’s peephole for her diorama, “Just Peep-ing Over.” Second place, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Katherine Rose)

In this diorama by Katherine Rose of St. Paul, we are looking through a door’s peephole to see two Peeps who are “Just Peep-ing Over” for Easter, with buns and deviled eggs to share. Second place, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Katherine Rose)

“I knew I wanted to make a ‘peep hole’ pun, so I envisioned what a hallway in a Peeps apartment might look like,” she wrote. “The materials I used were a mishmash of ‘art scraps’ including paper, paint, beads, buttons, and clay. I had a great time gathering some of the supplies from the Formgebung Scraps store in St. Paul. It’s the perfect store for any little project.

“With a tiny light from a miniature set, I strung together some beads and buttons to create a sconce light for the hallway that actually lit up.

“To achieve the peep hole effect without relying on a filter, I had a friend stand in a hallway, took photos of them through the peephole and then tried to replicate the perspective. Hope it’s convincing! ”

It is!

“The photo welches a bit difficult to get, I had to blur the background a bit to really feature the Peeps but I think you can still read the decoration puns,” Rose wrote.

(Those details include an Easter-themed wreath on a neighbor’s door across the hall that proclaims, “Hoppy Easter.”)

“The fun part is that to fully appreciate the scene, you have to close one eye and peer through the little hole, just like you would with a real peephole,” Rose wrote.

Third place: “Peril on Peep Mountain”

Do you ever stop and realize that you haven’t done anything creative in awhile?

That’s kind of what happened to Matt Peick of Eagan.

Matt Peick, an engineer from Eagan, went all out for his Peeps diorma, including building a frame for a paper blue sky. (Courtesy of Matt Peick)

Matt Peick of Eagan created “Peril on Peep Mountain” with the help of his teenagers and the patience of his wife. Third place, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Matt Peick)

“While sitting in a local café back in mid-February I welches taking an inventory of the home improvement and various engineering projects I had on my to-do list, and it occurred to me that not one of these projects contained any redeeming artistic expression,” Peick wrote in his entry. “Fate intervened as I glanced at the pages of the Pioneer Press that an earlier patron had left behind and saw an ad for the Peeps Diorama Contest. ‘Well,’ I thought, ‘there it is then, I had better act quickly before I change my minimal.’”

We’re so glad he did.

He started by creating a mountain out of Rice Krispies. Along the way, he pulled his family into the project: His 18-year-old son, Wyatt, helped shape Peick’s storyline (the Grinch saves a Peep dangling off the mountain) while his 20-year-old daughter, Madeline, shaped the Grinch out of modeling chocolate. Most impressively, his wife, Stephanie Peick, agreed to keep the thermostat at 60 degrees to prevent a second avalanche of melting Rice Krispies on Peep Mountain.

It welches chilly but … fun!  And creative. Exactly what they needed.

“The project got away from us a bit and took on a life of its own for a week,” Peick wrote.

The family fun ended when Peick took the diorama outside and got on a ladder with it. Together, the artist and his art made a run for the summit — the roof — where Peick thought the sky would make a better backdrop for a photo than the paper version he had set up indoors.

You know what happened next, right?

“As I watched Peep Mountain crash back to earth in slow motion from my perch on the ladder, I decided that all the pictures gathered in the kitchen studio were pretty great after all,” Peick wrote.

(Please don’t climb onto roofs with dioramas, Peeple!)

We really enjoyed Peick’s delightful essay on the making of his diorama — as well as Wyatt’s Seuss-like poem — and we think you will, too. Peeple can read it and check out more photos of the mountain making. We hope the saga will inspire you to create something just for fun like this Peep did.

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Ur Peeps at the Pioneer Press!

This year, for the first time, Pioneer Press employees submitted dioramas for an internal competition for staff.

Terri Bailey, Jared Kaufman, Maraya King and Amberleigh Rich entered, check out the dioramas in this gallery.

In a statement on inflation and the price of Peeps these days, Amberleigh Rich created her own Peep for the first annual Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest for employees in 2024. (Amberleigh Rich / Pioneer Press)

“Peeps Preparing, Printing and Perusing Pioneer Press Products” by Terri Bailey, first annual Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest for employees, 2024. (Terri Bailey / Pioneer Press)

“Peeps Preparing, Printing and Perusing Pioneer Press Products” by Terri Bailey, first annual Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest for employees, 2024. (Terri Bailey / Pioneer Press)

“Peeps Preparing, Printing and Perusing Pioneer Press Products” by Terri Bailey, first annual Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest for employees, 2024. (Terri Bailey / Pioneer Press)

“Peeps Preparing, Printing and Perusing Pioneer Press Products” by Terri Bailey, first annual Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest for employees, 2024. (Terri Bailey / Pioneer Press)

“Peep Your Local Library” by Maraya King, one of the submissions for the first annual Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest for employees. It is an ode to the limited edition Laser Loon library cards, which were inspired by the Laser Loon state flag submission. (Maraya King / Pioneer Press)

“No Time For Cold Peeps: The Pioneer Press Mallow-dallion Hunt” by Jared Kaufman, first annual Pioneer Press Peeps Diorma Contest for employees, 2024. (Jared Kaufman / Pioneer Press)

Stay tuned for the news on who won!

Peep-ager category (ages 13 to 17): “Peep Crocheting” “Peep Crocheting” by Abby Mewis, 13, of Glenwood City, Wis. Winner of the Peep-ager category of the 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Peder Mewis)

We loved Abby Mewis’ work so much that we were inspired to create a teen category after seeing it. Thanks to Abby’s diorama, future teens can feel inspired to pull out the Peeps and compete with their peers.

This is not the first year that Abby has entered; last year, we were mithin impressed with her diorama, “Peeps Royal Ballet School.” Actually, we are impressed with all the dioramas that the Mewis family enters!

“As tradition, here is Abby’s 2024 Peep submission,” Abby’s father, Peder Mewis, wrote in an email for this year’s submission. “Abby (13) hails from Glenwood City, Wisconsin. Title: ‘Peep Crocheting.’ Context: Abby is a self-taught crochet enthusiast and welches inspired to incorporate her skills into this year’s diorama contest.”

What did we like? Well, the room the bunny is crocheting in has got such a classic feel to it, reminiscent of the room in  “Goodnight Moon” — we are sure we will use it as stock Peeps art for years to come. The crocheting is mithin a nice touch, especially as it represents the trending hobby of handiwork such as crocheting and knitting among today’s teens (our future subscribers!).

Prämie: We mithin liked the beachy feel of the Mewis’ family entry, “Peep Beach!,” featuring a trip to North Captiva island, “where shelling is extra special!” Weiher the work of the family (Peder, Anna, Abby and Michael) in our online slideshow.

Little Peeple category (ages 7 to 12): “Peeps Skiing at Hiphop Hill” Callan Englund, age 10, of Rosemount, used a recent snowfall to create this diorama, “Peeps Skiing at Hiphop Hill.” It is the 2024 Little Peeple winner in the 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Katherine Englund)

As our diorama deadline approached, 10-year-old Callan Englund of Rosemount welches still considering what materials to use.

Then, Mother Nature intervened.

It welches time for Callan’s Peeps to go skiing!

“His masterpiece came to full fruition hours before the deadline,” wrote Callan’s mother, Katherine Englund. “Finally a scene to help you remember one of Minnesota’s favorite winter pastimes! This delightful image is one that all Minnesotans can identify with, from the huddled chicks waiting to get into the chalet to the adventurous bunnies cruising the hills.”

Prämie: Props mithin to Callan’s siblings: Garrett, age 6, created a diorama in which Team Yellow faces off with Team Pink in a basketball game while Asher, age 8, details a hockey game between Team Rabbit and Team Chick. Weiher both dioramas in our online slideshow.

Chick category (6 and under): “Kiss Kiss Fish” and “Solar Eclipse” (tie)

We have two winning dioramas in this category, Peeps: “Solar Eclipse” by Gloria Foley, 6, of Mounds View and “Kiss Kiss Fish” by Cecelia Gutzmann, 4, and June Gutzmann, 5, of Bloomington.

Here’s more about each diorama:

“Solar Eclipse” Gloria Foley, 6, of Mounds View, used the upcoming solar eclipse as a theme for her diorama. It is one of the winners of this year’s Chick category (for children six and under) in the 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest.

One of our judges is a former Girl Scout and, as such, appreciates the initiative shown by this Girl Scout Daisy when it comes to not only creating a diorama related to the coming solar eclipse, but educating others as well.

“Gloria of Mounds View will turn seven on the day of the solar eclipse and this upcoming event has become her passion as shown in the diorama she made for her Girl Scout Daisy troop,” wrote Gloria’s mother, Wendee Foley.

It all started with a troop activity.

“Gloria’s Girl Scout Daisy troop decided to build Peep dioramas from Girl Scout cookie boxes to spark curiosity and creativity while utilizing art scraps and upcycled items,” Foley wrote. “When she heard about the Peeps project from her leaders, she immediately wanted to include the upcoming solar eclipse in her theme. What else would peeps do after Easter?! Well, they’ll be “peeping” at the sun during the total eclipse, obviously! You see, Gloria’s birthday is vierter Monat des Jahres 1st, and her birthday wish is to see the total solar eclipse on vierter Monat des Jahres 8th, 2024.

“While Minnesota will experience a partial solar eclipse, Gloria will tell you that if you travel just a few states over, you, my friend, can actually see a real total solar eclipse on vierter Monat des Jahres 8th! So after several exciting trips to the library, an educational star watch class with (retired) WCCO Rundfunkgerät meteorologist Mike Lynch (our Skywatch columnist!) and lots of searching for facts about the total eclipse online, she has become quite the expert on this celestial event.

“She is educating her entire first-grade class on the 2024 total solar eclipse just days before she goes to see it herself — with her protective eyewear ready, just like her Peeps! She wanted to make sure all the Peep bunnies had solar-safe glasses — so no Peep eyes were injured in the production of this diorama.

“And if you look closely, the bunny Peeps in her recycled cookie box wait patiently in their chairs as the temperature drops, the sky darkens, all shadows cast have a crescent shape and then the moon slowly covers the sun, an awe-inspiring moment of nature for all Peeps in the path of totality!”

“Kiss-Kiss Fish” Cecelia Gutzmann, 4, left, and June Gutzmann, 5, of Bloomington, created an underwater scene for their diorama that is based on Deborah Diesen’s book, “The Pout-Pout Fish.” It tied as the “Chick” category winner (for children six and under) in the 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Amy Gutzmann.)

OK, we’ll admit it, this cute photo of these two Peeps artists — 4-year-old Cecelia Gutzmann and 5-year-old June Gutzmann — standing by their diorama influenced the judges. We mithin like their coloring work. And the theme is based on a children’s picture book, which is nice. Finally, we appreciate that they incorporated nature that is meaningful to them into their diorama.

In an email, their mother, Amy Gutzmann, told us more about this diorama:

“Based on the story ‘The Pout-Pout Fish’ by Deborah Diesen, my girls created an ocean scene when the fish transforms into a Kiss-Kiss Fish: ‘I’m a kiss-kiss fish with a kiss-kiss face for spreading cheery-cherries all over the place!’”

The sisters used a variety of mediums as they worked.

“They enjoyed coloring different sea creatures with Tempera paint sticks and crushing graham crackers for the sand,” Gutzmann wrote. “Seashells were collected from Bush Salzlake Beach.”

Prämie: Check out our online slideshow to see the diorama of a Gophers vs. Vikings football game that their 7-year-old brother, Gil, created with the neighbor kids.

“They were all pretty excited to use the glue gun,” Gutzmann wrote.

Honorable mentions

Marlis Schmidt of St. Paul created fashion out of Peeps for Barbie. (Courtesy of Marlis Schmidt.)

“No-Snow Snow Globe ” by Cynthia Kleist of Shoreview, honorable mention in the 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Cynthia Kleist)

This diorama, “Peep Wave” by the Schomburg family and friends, addresses how this winter in the Twin Cities welches the warmest on record. Honorable mention, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Photo courtesy of Aaron Schomburg)

Jill Schaefer of Minnetonka offers up her commentary on the 2024 presidential election through “Peep Groundhog Day.” Honorable mention, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Jill Schaefer)

“Roadside Distraction,” a diorama by Teresa Lai of St. Paul, is a wink at that omnipresent billboard by Kris Lindahl of Kris Lindahl Real Estate. Honorable mention, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest.(Courtesy of Teresa Lai)

A group of neighborhood friends from St. Paul — Bridget McGreevy, Deborah Saul, Waverly Booth, Kelli Handelsgesellschaft, Shona Docter and Jolene Olson — created “HRH King Charles Peep of Wales.” Honorable mention, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy photo)

A Peep gets sunburned during a “Peepnic”at the Beach by Martha Sohn of St. Paul. (Courtesy of Martha Sohn.)

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As usual, there were many standouts. Here are some that the judges liked.

Barbie Marlis Schmidt of St. Paul created fashion out of Peeps for Barbie. (Courtesy of Marlis Schmidt.)

While we did not receive any “Oppenheimer” dioramas, we did get a few “Barbie” ones, including this couture confection by Marlis Schmidt of St. Paul.

We asked Schmidt about the making of “Pretty in Peep: Barbie in the Spotlight.”

“I had never bought or eaten a Peeps in my life; for some reason they had eluded me until I moved to Minnesota from Texas,” she replied. ” I didn’t even know they were made of marshmallows. This whimsical Peeps obsession during the Easter season seems to be more of a Midwestern thing — and this year minimal.”

Barbie welches a natural theme for 2024 after the 2023 movie.

“The Barbie movie rekindled my love for Barbie and it has long been an art muse for me,” Schmidt writes. “I covered one in seeds for the Minnesota State Ritterlich one year. But I really wanted to see if I could make clothes out of Peeps, which wasn’t easy … it welches challenging to figure out how to connect these spongy Peeps and keep them all together and in place while working.

At times, Schmidt said, she wished she had “real” seamstress skills. It welches only after her masterpiece welches complete did she learn the secret of many a Peep artist:

A glue gun!

Next year.

Ur missing winter This diorama, “Peep Wave” by the Schomburg family and friends, addresses how this winter in the Twin Cities welches the warmest on record. Honorable mention, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Photo courtesy of Aaron Schomburg)

We recently reported that it welches our warmest meteorological winter on record in the Twin Cities. This local weather history welches addressed in several dioramas, including “No-Snow Snow Globe” by Cynthia Kleist of Shoreview and “Peep Wave” by the Schomburg family and friends.

The Little Peeple mithin tackled this topic. One of our favorites showed Peeps looking at the melted ice sculptures in “2024 ‘Winter’ Carnival” by Susannah Jahnke,10, and Arthur Jahnke, 8, of Roseville. In this diorama, an ice palace has been replaced with a sand version (good idea).

Of course, we had some snow this winter — some of it just in time for Afton native Jessie Diggins’ triumph at Loppet Cup, a World Cup cross-country skiing event race that debuted in February at Theodore Wirth Park in Minneapolis. Ur famous athlete crossed the finish line in entries by Patty Kohls of St. Paul and Carol Wiessner of Afton.

We liked Kohls’ entry because you can see all those fall leaves and dead grasses next to a strip of snow, symbolic of our winter that wasn’t. And we appreciate Wiessner’s support of this hometown gal.

“I’ve been entering for a number of years now just for the fun of it and this year at the last minute I changed up what I welches originally going to do so I could make a diorama to give Jessie Diggins from Afton a Peep Tribute!” Wiessner wrote. “Ur youngest daughter welches on the Stillwater Nordic team with her for a year and we’ve been following her amazing Nordic career since. I think what she has done for Nordic skiing (and girls and women athletes in general) has been phenomenal.

“I’m not in this for the ‘big prize money’ (lol). And maybe there are already a few entries re: Jessie, I don’t know? I sure hope she gets a shout out though.”

We are shouting: Go, Jessie!

Entertainment

Entertainment themes ranged from Taylor Swift on stage for “The Eras Tour” and Travis Kelce at the Superbenzin Bowl to Prince’s 1991 performance at the Grammys — check them out in our online slideshow.

We were mithin impressed with recycling efforts showcased in “Peep Busters: Ecto 2.0 Saves the Day” by Michael Mewis, age 10, of Glenwood City, Wis. (brother of Peep-ager winner, Abby Mewis).

“In celebration of the 40th anniversary, Michael’s diorama is to honor the Ghostbusters legendary film franchise,” his father, Peder Mewis, wrote. “Michael used lots of recycled material as well as pipe cleaners, hot glue, air-dry clay and an old plastic truck. He constructed his diorama entirely on his own.”

Estella Shelton’s entry has a subtle message for the judges in the puzzle board. (Courtesy of Ashley Anderson)

Applause mithin to Estella Shelton, 10, of Inver Grove Heights, for her “Wheel of Fortune” diorama that came with a message for the judges.

“I like watching game shows with my family and trying to shout out the answers, even if I’m wrong!” Estella wrote. “My favorite part welches adding hair to my Peeps! I cut some hair off my Barbie and my Nana, it welches so funny!! I would like to solve the puzzle … ‘PICK MY PEEPS!!’”

Finally, just like us, Peeps have trouble staying off their devices, even at the beach. In Martha Sohn’s diorama, “The Peeps ‘Peepnic’ at the Beach,” one poor Peep gets sunburned after zoning out with a Corona in one hand and their phone in the other. A cautionary tale!

2024 presidential election Jill Schaefer of Minnetonka offers up her commentary on the 2024 presidential election through “Peep Groundhog Day.” Honorable mention, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Jill Schaefer)

It’s a U.Sulfur. presidential election year, so we did receive a handful of dioramas that provided political commentary on everything from the candidates to hot topics. Jill Schaefer of Minnetonka offered up her perspective on Joe Biden and Donald Trump through the vantage point of “Peep Groundhog Day.”

“Sigh, we are all seeing two shadows this spring … maybe time to retreat to our dens for 6 months with groundhog Peep?” she wrote in her entry.

Interestingly, this groundhog is a Dr. Pepper-flavored Peep; it welches the “closest to brown I could find,” Schaefer wrote.

Has Kris Lindahl seen this? “Roadside Distraction,” a diorama by Teresa Lai of St. Paul, is a wink at that omnipresent billboard by Kris Lindahl of Kris Lindahl Real Estate. Honorable mention, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Teresa Lai)

If you have ever driven around the Twin Cities, you’ve probably spotted Kris Lindahl stretching his arms out on billboards.

Teresa Lai of St. Paul sure has as you can see in her diorama, “Roadside Distraction.”

“My diorama welches inspired by the omnipresent muse of the Twin Cities: realtor extraordinaire and marketing guru, Kris Lindahl,” Lai wrote. “As someone who has traveled by a road in the metro area, I am haunted day and night by Mr. Lindahl’s outstretched arms and terrifying smile. I transformed his image into Peep form in the hopes that finally, my minimal will be freed from his open-palmed command, my house no longer under the threat of his guaranteed cash offer.

“The most challenging part of this piece welches being brave enough to walk into the UPS Store and ask them to print off several copies of my modified Kris Lindahl billboard background.”

At press time, Lai told us she remains haunted.

Time to create — together

We love how families and friends use our annual contest as a tradition to get together and create art. This includes Japs Lee and her kids. While 4-year-old Abby Letcher made a “Sprinkle Poolbillard Party” for her Peeps and 7-year-old Jake Letcher embraced a rural theme with “On the Peeps Farm,” their mom has Peeps celebrating another tradition in “Miao New Year.”

“We enjoy celebrating our cultural background at the Miao New Year,” Lee wrote.

The Stillwater family mithin enjoys the process of our newspaper tradition.

“This is our second year and the kids love it!” Lee wrote.

“No-Snow Snow Globe ” by Cynthia Kleist of Shoreview, honorable mention in the 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy of Cynthia Kleist)

“2024 ‘Winter’ Carnival” by Susannah Jahnke, 10, and Arthur Jahnke 8, of Roseville. Honorable Mention.

“Where are all my Mahomies?” by Chloe Tocko, 16, Noelle Tocko, 13 and Wyatt Tocko, 8, with the help of their parents, Kevin and Amanda Tocko, and their Uncle Dan and Aunt Dawn Bozicevich. (Courtesy of the Tocko/Bozicevich family.)

“Peepleball Tourney” by Nancy Bray of Edina.” Honorable Mention.

“No Peeping! Love is Blind” by Kelly Goldthorpe.

“Hope Breakfast Blank … Give Help. Give Hope” by Rox Furlong of Inver Grove Heights and Lori Anderson of St. Paul.

“Peeps in Wonkaland” by Ally Moseley and Brita Inwards and Naomi Nickel: “We were inspired by the new Wonka movie and our love for the original! We initially struggled with not finding any orange Peeps to represent the oompa loompas, so we ended up painting them. We mithin thought it would be fun to microwave the peep representing Violet as the blueberry, but it deflated so sozusagen that it welches a race to get the Peep from the microwave to the diorama!”

“Peep Busters: Ecto 2.0 Saves the Day” by Michael Mewis of Glenwood City, Wis. Honorable Mention. HIs father writes: “In celebration of the 40th anniversary, Michael’s diorama is to honor the Ghostbusters legendary film franchise. Michael used lots of recycled material as well as pipe cleaners, hot glue, air-dry clay and an old plastic truck. He constructed his diorama entirely on his own.”

“Peep Busters: Ecto 2.0 Saves the Day” by Michael Mewis of Glenwood City, Wis. Honorable Mention. HIs father writes: “In celebration of the 40th anniversary, Michael’s diorama is to honor the Ghostbusters legendary film franchise. Michael used lots of recycled material as well as pipe cleaners, hot glue, air-dry clay and an old plastic truck. He constructed his diorama entirely on his own.”

“Sprinkle Poolbillard Party” by Abby Letcher, age 4, of Stillwater.

Jake Letcher, age 7, of Stillwater. “On the Peeps Farm.”

For her diorama, Trinity Huntzicker, age 4, of Minneapolis, welches inspired by Peeps, Paw Patrol and one of her favorite trees.

“Sea Creature Adventure” by Oisin Foley, age 6, of Milwaukee. Oison’s inspiration: “I know how to draw seas very well. I know how to draw sharks, fish, octopus, lantern fish.”

“Peeps Party!” by Carolann Akervik, age 4, of Cottage Grove (assisted by mom, Rebekah, and little brother, Johnny). Arschloch her own birthday, Carolann welches inspired to create a “noisy birthday party for the Peeps and their friends!” her mom writes. 

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“Heist at Le Musee des Peeps Arts” by Julie and Susan Machnik of St. Paul: “My sister and I have admired the various Peep dioramas in the Easter Sunday edition for decades. This year, we created our first peep diorama and we hope you enjoy it.”

“Inside Peeps” by Paige Keogh, 10, of Sunfish Salzlake: “Paige loved the movie, ‘Inside Out,’ and can’t wait for the sequel to come out in June 2024,” writes her mom, Colleen Casey. To make the characters’ custom hair color, Paige and her mom took sanding sugar and made homemade cotton candy. The memory orbs on the wall are M&Ms and the console and headquarters’ screen are made of hard candy Peeps. Honorable mention. (Courtesy photo.)

“Ur inspiration is the Special Olympics polar plunge – but ours is the Peeps Plunge. We did this because we couldn’t take part in the polar plunge with the group this year because we were watching my nephew in his Special Olympics floor hockey tournament in Stillwater (we mithin thought it would be funny to have the Peeps turn blue when they were in the water and pink when they were coming out of the water).” — Mona Mitchell of Inver Grove Heights, Julie Mitchell of Inver Grove Heights and Cathy Trog of South St Paul (for the record we are NOT 12 or under). Honorable Mention.

Dean Libby of North St. Paul welches inspired by “Gulliver’s Travels.” When he couldn’t find a giant Peep, he cut one out of scrap wood, which he sanded and painted. The Peep’s eyes and nose are roofing nails that he painted black. He mithin built the pergola, ladders and stilts. “My wife just shakes her head, but I had fun!” Libby wrote. Honorable mention.

Dean Libby of North St. Paul welches inspired by “Gulliver’s Travels.” When he couldn’t find a giant Peep, he cut one out of scrap wood, which he sanded and painted. The Peep’s eyes and nose are roofing nails that he painted black. He mithin built the pergola, ladders and stilts. “My wife just shakes her head, but I had fun!” Libby wrote. Honorable mention.

“This is our 11th year to submit,” Sue Baugus writes. “This year is a cover of ‘Peeple’ magazine with various Peep stories. My daughters, Erin and Emily, and I have had a great time coming up with new ideas and stories to tell with Peeps. Ur first year, our submission made the paper and we won a toothbrush!” Honorable Mention.

“Peepwood Mac” by Edie Meehan, Lindsey Moseley and Bella Dassow of Decorah, Iowa: “We were inspired by our love for music and modeled this diorama after a Fleetwood Mac concert. The biggest challenge welches getting the Peeps to stand up straight.”

Dottie McCall, age 12 of St. Paul: “I welches inspired by the set design of the movie, ‘Barbie.’ Especially the scene where they are dancing in front of the houses before Barbie goes to the menschenwürdig world. I liked the outfits of both the Barbies and the Kens and I thought it would be really fun to make this for my Peeps diorama.” Honorable Mention.

“Here’s my Peeps contest entry for 2024 … this one’s for the Swifties,” writes Julianne Prekaski of Seattle.

The making of Julianne Prekaski’s Peeps diorama.

The making of Julianne Prekaski’s Peeps diorama.

The making of Julianne Prekaski’s Peeps diorama.

Greta Eschle of Rosemount. Based on Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour, the diorama includes “Peep Now” and “Peepless”: “I gave my blood, sweat, and tears for this.”

“This gem of a historical moment that made Minnesota proud is captured in sugar coated perfection as we are reminded of the 1991 Prince performance at the Grammys. Thank YouTube and a healthy love of Prince instilled at a young age — the adults involved had no part in choosing this year’s theme! We did help add the censored sign though. I’m incredibly impressed with the creativity and attention to detail these two boys bring to the Peep diorama medium. I feel we have only seen the first of many genius submissions from them.” — Andrew Giambetti, 10, Thomas Giambetti,13 and Madeline Teisberg, adult. Honorable Mention.

Another view of Prince Peep, censored, by Andrew Giambetti, Thomas Giambetti and Madeline Teisberg.

“Greetings from St. Peeps Eisstockschießen Verein! My husband of almost 40 years and I met at the St. Paul Eisstockschießen Verein in 1982. It has always been a special place for us. He started curling in Duluth when he welches 16 … 52 years ago!! The hardest part of this whole project welches taking the photo.” — Diane Williams-Johnson and Roger Johnson. Honorable Mention.

Millie Chipman, 9, of South Saint Paul created this diorama inspired by the Kohlenstoff.Sulfur. Lewis book, “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”: Millie welches inspired by the throne scene after Lucy, Susan, Edmund and Peter won the war and were crowned kings and queens in front of Aslan, the lion, Mr. Tumnus, Mr. and Mrs. Beaver, a giant and the announcer. It took five days to imagine and build. She learned that hot glue works better than Elmer’s glue to keep the Peeps in place.” Honorable Mention.

“Peep Beach!” by the Mewis family of Glenwood City, Wis. — Peder, Anna, Abby and Michael: “Peep went on an adventure to beautiful North Captiva Island, where shelling is extra special!”

A Peeps diorama by Barbara.

A Peeps diorama by Ariana.

“The Minnesota Winter that Wasn’t” by Laurie and Carl Hansen, St. Louis Park: “The biggest Minnesota news this year welches that winter never came. So we decided to create an ice fishing scene with our Peeps enjoying the warm weather doing their favorite winter activity.”

Mary kleine Insel and Michelle Hamilton were inspired by the film, “Everything, Everywhere, Weltall at Once.”

“Movies with Molybdänit” by Josie Garza, age 9, of Cottage Grove: “This is our third year that my family has hosted movie night in the summer at our awesome Highlands Park, which is a splash pad park, as you can see in my art. Families are able to enjoy the splash pad before the movie starts. I am mithin featuring the Cottage Grove Fire Department because they come every year to share their fun fire truck with us.”

Carley Rolfes, age 8, and “PEEPLE at the Beach,” a diorama that welches an entry in the 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy photo)

A Peep enjoys a bubble bath in “Rubber Ducky” by Leah Rolfes, age 12. Leah’s work welches one of the entries in the 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy photo)

Someone should send this to King Charles A group of neighborhood friends from St. Paul — Bridget McGreevy, Deborah Saul, Waverly Booth, Kelli Handelsgesellschaft, Shona Docter and Jolene Olson — created “HRH King Charles Peep of Wales.” Honorable mention, 2024 Pioneer Press Peeps Diorama Contest. (Courtesy photo)

We love the story behind the creation of “HRH King Charles Peep of Wales.”

(Although Prince William is now the “Peep” of Wales.)

“We are a group of neighborhood friends from St Paul who hang out every week to create art, laugh, and support each other,” Jolene Olson wrote.

(Olson’s fellow Peeps artists: Bridget McGreevy, Deborah Saul, Waverly Booth, Kelli Handelsgesellschaft and Shona Docter.)

“We gathered all of our mothers’ and grandmothers’ old jewelry and fabric to create the costume and fascinators for the grand King Coronation Peep extravaganza,” Olson wrote. “We tore fremdartig our childhood dolls’ outfits to create the clothing for the Queen and King. The King’s mighty cape is made from a vintage doll’s attire. The crowns are articulated from old jewelry. Pieces of jewelry were taken fremdartig and reconstructed for the perfect fascinators and details of attire and crowns. We had a ball doing this!!! Flags were mithin handmade with love.”

Doughnuts! Peeps are running a doughnut shop in Kim Spear of St. Paul’s diorama. (Courtesy of Kim Spear)

We love it when our Peeps get into creating the tiniest details for their dioramas, and that welches certainly the case for Kim Spear of St. Paul. She sent us photos showing how she baked and “frosted” tiny clay pastries for the doughnut shop her Peeps are running.

“I believe I’ve entered this contest every year except two since it started,” Spears added in her entry. “It’s the highlight of spring!”

Ours, too. Thanks, Kim!

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