Home Town Cookn Recipe Contest Rules



The recipe submission period for the Thanksgiving 2017 Recipe Contest (the "Contest") begins at 9:00 a.m. Eastern Time ("ET") on September 8, 2017 and ends at 5:00 p.m. ET on September 28, 2017 (the "Submission Period").


The judging period for the Contest begins at 9:00 a.m. ET on September 29, 2017 and ends at 5:00 p.m. ET on October 27, 2017 (the "Judging Period"). The Judging Period is comprised of 2 rounds as follows: Round 1 - (September 29, 2017 - October 1, 2017) and Round 2 (October 2, 2017 - October 27, 2017).


The Contest is open only to legal residents of the United States who are twenty-one (21) years of age or older at the time of entry (the "Entrant" or "Entrants"). Employees, contractors and interns of GateHouse Media, LLC and its subsidiaries (collectively, "GateHouse Media" or "Sponsor"), the Culinary School at Columbus (OH) State Community College (the "Culinary School") and each of their respective divisions, affiliates, parent companies, subsidiaries, advertising and promotion agencies (including, in each case, immediate family members) are not eligible to enter the Contest. For purposes of this Contest, "immediate family members" is defined as spouses, siblings, parents, children, grandparents and grandchildren, whether as "in-laws", or by current or past marriage, remarriage, adoption, co-habitation or other familial extension, and any other persons residing at the same household location, whether or not related. In order to enter the Contest or win a prize in this Contest, the Entrant must comply fully with these Official Rules, and by entering agrees to be bound by these Official Rules and the decisions of GateHouse Media, whose decisions shall be binding and final in all respects.

If you are a food professional such as a baker, chef, food writer or someone who creates recipes for pay, you are not eligible to enter the Contest.


An Entrant should log on to www.Hometowncookn.com (the "Website") during the Submission Period, click on the Contest banner and follow the instructions for entry. The Entrant must provide all requested information in the required fields including full name, e-mail address and ZIP code and then must enter a recipe (the "Recipe" or "Recipes") as instructed on the Website. The Entrant should then click "submit" to be entered in the Contest (the "Entry" or "Entries"). In the event the Contest is entered via a mobile device, message and data charges may apply.


Entries for the Contest will not be accepted through postal mail, hand-delivery, express mail delivery, e-mail or via facsimile.

Sponsor will not be responsible for incomplete, lost, late, or misdirected Entries.


  1. GateHouse Media is looking for original Thanksgiving recipes to showcase to its audience. The Recipe must be the Entrant's own original creation and not previously published. The Entrant may use other recipes for inspiration, but Entrant must use his or her own unique ingredient and cooking instruction changes in order for the Recipe to be considered.
  2. The Entrant must enter the Recipe into one of the following four (4) Contest categories (the "Category" or "Categories")
    • (a) Soups;
    • (b) Vegetable dishes;
    • (c) Cakes and cobblers; or
    • (d) Non-turkey entrees
  3. The Recipe must be in English and should specify the following: (a) number of servings, (b) list of all required ingredients in specific, common U.S. household measurements or weights, (c) step by step preparation instructions and (d) cooking times, if applicable, as well as type of cookware used (including exact dimensions or sizes).
  4. There are no limits to the number of Recipes an Entrant may submit during the Submission Period.
  5. The Recipe should never have been published before, nor won any other prize nor been submitted or entered in any other recipe or food preparation contest. GateHouse Media will disqualify previously published Recipes, such as, but not limited to, those in major cookbooks, in magazines, from food companies, or on major food or recipe websites.
  6. By submitting the Recipe in this Contest, the Entrant grants the Sponsor unrestricted use of the submitted entry which includes the right to publish the Recipe and any other information provided worldwide in all print and electronic media (now or hereafter existing) without time limitation, and the right to include the Entrant's hometown (e.g. city and state) in connection therewith. Sponsor reserves the right to edit, modify, translate, reproduce and distribute the submitted material in any medium and in any manner as it deems appropriate.
  7. By entering the Contest, Entrant represents, acknowledges and warrants that the submitted Recipe is an original work created solely by the Entrant, that the Recipe does not infringe on the copyrights, trademarks, moral rights, rights of privacy/publicity or intellectual property rights of any person or entity, and that no other party has any right, title, claim or interest in the Recipe.
  8. By submitting the Recipe, Entrant accepts the Rules and agrees to be bound by the decisions of the Contest judges, which will be final as to all matters.


Judging - Round 1
During Round 1, each Recipe will be judged by a team of GateHouse editors and food writers (the "GHS Judges") based on the following criteria (the "GHS Judging Criteria"):

(a) Relevance - relevance to the Thanksgiving theme of the Contest and overall appeal of the Recipe (40%);

(b) Organization - is the Recipe written well, including all steps, in an organized and reproducible way? (30%); and

(c) Preparation - ease of preparation, is the recipe practical (e.g. does not require special cookware or ingredients) ? (30%).

The top three (3) finalists in each Category (the "Finalist" or "Finalists") will be chosen based on the GHS Judging Criteria. In the event of a tie, the highest scoring Recipe in item (a) of the GHS Judging Criteria will be used as the tie breaker.

Each Finalist will be notified by telephone or e-mail by October 6, 2017 in accordance with the information provided at the time of entry.

Decisions of the GHS Judges is final and binding on all matters related to this Contest.

Judging - Round 2
During Round 2, the Recipes of the Finalists will be prepared by the Culinary School between October 2 - October 27, 2017 and judged by representatives of the Culinary School (the "CS Judges") according to the following criteria (the "Culinary School Judging Criteria"):

(a) Taste - is the Recipe balanced in flavor, taste and texture? Does the Recipe taste great with every bite? (50%);

(b) Visual Appeal - how does this recipe present on a plate, bowl or in a baking dish? How will it look on a Thanksgiving table? (25%); and

(c) Creativity - is the Recipe original? Is the Recipe reflective of unique twists in ingredient usage? (25%)

One (1) winner in each Category will be selected as the winner (the "Category Winner" or "Category Winners") based on the Culinary School Judging Criteria. One of the four (4) Category Winners will then be selected as the Grand Prize Winner of the Contest based on the Culinary School Judging Criteria.

Decisions of the CS Judges is final and binding on all matters related to this Contest. The CS Judges will disqualify previously published recipes, such as but not limited to those in cookbooks, in magazines, online, from food companies, and winners in recipe contests, unless the recipe features changes considered significant by the CS Judges, in their sole and absolute discretion. Finalists will be required to certify, on information or belief, that their Recipes are their original creation and have not been published or publicized and have not been recognized as a winner in a recipe contest. The CS Judges reserve the right to change Recipe names or assign entries to the Category they deem appropriate. Decisions of the CS Judges are final in all matters relating to this contest.

Entrants are eligible to win one (1) prize in this Contest.


Odds of winning depend on the number of eligible Contest entries received and the quality of the Recipes received, as judged pursuant to these Rules.


A total of five (5) prizes will be awarded in the Contest as follows:

Grand Prize Winner - The Grand Prize Winner will be awarded the choice of a trip or the cash option, as described below.

(A) TRIP - a four-day, three-night prize package to New York City, New York, New Orleans, Louisiana or Napa Valley, California (the "Prize Package"). The Prize Package awarded to the Grand Prize Winner includes the following, which will be further detailed in the information packet provided to the Grand Prize Winner:

  1. Round-trip coach-class air transportation for the Grand Prize Winner and one (1) guest of the Grand Prize Winner (the "Guest") from a major airport nearest the Grand Prize Winner's home;
  2. Lodging (one-room, double-occupancy) at a four-star property at the location chosen by the Grand Prize Winner;
  3. Culinary Food Tour for the Grand Prize Winner and the Guest; and
  4. $200 debit card to use for additional expenses

The Prize Package includes ground transportation, but does not include taxes, travel insurance, bag fees, telephone charges, personal expenses, gratuities, service charges, hotel room service, laundry service, merchandise, souvenirs, site-seeing excursions and any other incidental costs or expenses not identified in these Official Rules. All costs and expenses not specifically described in these Official Rules are the responsibility of the Grand Prize Winner. The Grand Prize Winner and the Guest must travel together on the same itinerary, including the same departure and return date. Air travel is subject to restrictions stated on the informational packet that will be included with the Prize Package. All travel and accommodations are subject to availability. The Grand Prize Winner may be required to present a credit card at the time of hotel check-in. The Grand Prize Winner and the Guest are solely responsible for determining and obtaining, at his/her own expense, required travel documents. Certain travel and security restrictions may apply and it is the responsibility of the Grand Prize Winner and the Guest to comply with all travel, security and other laws, regulations, and airline passenger rules that apply to them. The Sponsors are not responsible for airline cancellations, blackout dates, delays, diversions or substitutions and no refund or compensation will be awarded in any such event. The Sponsor is not liable for any missed events, opportunities or expenses incurred as a consequence of flight cancellation/delay or ground transportation delay. Travel may be subject to weather changes and conditions and changes outside the control of the Sponsor. The Sponsor is not responsible if all or any portion of the Prize Package is delayed, postponed or cancelled for any reason, in which event that portion of the Prize Package is forfeited in its entirety and no substitution will be provided, except in the Sponsor's sole discretion. The Sponsor is not responsible or liable in any manner if the Grand Prize Winner or the Guest are unable to accept or use all or any portion of the Prize Package due to failure to qualify or comply with these Official Rules or any law, regulation or other rules that apply to acceptance, receipt or use of the Prize Package. The Sponsor will not replace any lost, mutilated or stolen tickets, travel vouchers or certificates. The Prize Package is not transferable. The approximate retail value ("ARV") of the Prize Package is $2,999.00. The actual retail value of the Prize Package may vary depending on the Grand Prize Winner's residence, market conditions, changes in value of components (e.g. air transportation and hotel rates) and other reasons. The Sponsor is not responsible for and the Grand Prize Winner will not receive the difference between the actual value of the Prize Package at the time of award and the stated ARV.


B. CASH OPTION - In lieu of the Prize Package, the Grand Prize Winner will have the option of receiving $1,000.00, awarded as a check (the "Cash Option"). If the Grand Prize Winner elects to take the Cash Option, the Grand Prize winner will not receive the Prize Package or any elements of the Prize Package.

Category Winners

  1. Category Winner - SOUPS: $500.00 American Express gift card.
  2. Category Winner - VEGETABLE DISH: $500.00 American Express gift card.
  3. Category Winner - CAKES AND COBBLERS: $500.00 American Express gift card.
  4. Category Winner - NON-TURKEY ENTREES: $500.00 American Express gift card.

Each of the Winners will be notified on or around October 27, 2017 via phone or e-mail.

Each of the Winners must each sign, have notarized and return within fifteen (15) days of prize notification, an Affidavit of Eligibility, Liability and Publicity Release (and any other documentation required by Sponsor, in its sole discretion) in order to be eligible to accept the prize or the winner will be disqualified and the prize may be awarded to an alternate winner.

No substitution or transfer of the prizes will be allowed, except at the sole discretion of GateHouse Media. GateHouse Media reserves the right to substitute prizes of equal or greater value. No compensation will be given for lost, stolen, mutilated or expired gift cards. GateHouse Media is not responsible for replacing lost, stolen, mutilated or expired gift cards. Fulfillment of gift cards is the sole responsibility of the merchant, not GateHouse Media. The gift card must be surrendered upon redemption and no photocopies or reproductions will be honored.


All local, state and federal taxes incurred by accepting a prize will be the sole responsibility of the prize winner. Any person winning over $600 in prizes during any one (1) year period will receive an IRS Form 1099 at the end of the calendar year, and a copy of such form will be filed with the IRS. USE OF E-MAIL ADDRESSES By participating in this Contest, an Entrant agrees to opt-in to receive e-mail communications from the Sponsor. If an Entrant chooses to opt out of such future communications from the Sponsor, he or she will be able to do so by following the instructions on any electronic communications sent by the Sponsor. Upon opting-out, the Sponsor will no longer send e-mail messages to the Entrant. An Entrant may choose to opt out of being on any Sponsor e-mail list during the Contest Period. An Entrant's choice to opt out will not affect the Entrant's entry or chances in the Contest.


It is the Entrant's responsibility to enter in the appropriate manner. Each Entrant is responsible for all costs or charges involved in accessing the Website and warrants that the cost of accessing the site, if any, is part of a larger agreement with an Internet Service Provider or some other means, and that the cost of this access is not an incremental cost. If for any reason the internet portion of the program is not capable of running as planned, including infection by computer virus, bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical failures, or any other causes beyond the control of GateHouse Media which corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity, or proper conduct of this Contest, GateHouse Media reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to disqualify any individual who tampers with the entry process, and to cancel, terminate, modify, or suspend the Contest. Should the Contest be terminated prior to the end of the Submission Period, finalists will be drawn in each Category at days-end from eligible entries received online up to the time of cancellation. GateHouse Media assumes no responsibility for any error, omission, interruption, deletion, defect, delay in operation or transmission, communication line failure, theft, or destruction or unauthorized access to, or alteration of entries. GateHouse Media is not responsible for lost, misdirected, illegible, damaged or undelivered entries. GateHouse Media is not responsible for any problems or technical malfunctions of any telephone network or lines, computer online systems, services or providers, computer equipment, software, failure of any email or entry to be received due to technical problems or traffic congestion on the internet or at any web site, or any combination thereof, including any injury or damage to participant's or any other person's computer related to or resulting from participation or downloading of any material in this Contest. CAUTION: Any attempt by an Entrant to deliberately damage any web site or undermine the legitimate operation of the Contest is a violation of criminal and civil laws and should such an attempt be made, GateHouse Media reserves the right to seek damages from any such person to the fullest extent permitted by law. In the event of a dispute, entries made by Internet will be declared made by the authorized account holder of the e-mail address submitted at time of entry. "Authorized account holder" is defined as the natural person who is assigned to an e-mail address by an Internet access provider, online service provider, or other organization (e.g. business, educational institution, etc.) that is responsible for assigning e-mail addresses for the domain associated with the submitted e-mail address. Automated entries are prohibited, and any use of such devices will cause disqualification. Collection and use of personally identifiable information will be in accordance with GateHouse Media's Privacy Policy as posted on its website.


By entering, each Entrant agrees to comply with these Official Rules and the decisions of GateHouse Media, which are binding and final, and release GateHouse Media, and each of its divisions, affiliates, parent companies, subsidiaries, advertising and promotion agencies and anyone associated with the production of this Contest, and their respective directors, officers, employees and agents from any and all liability for any claims, injuries, losses or damages (including attorneys fees) of any kind arising out of their participation in this Contest or resulting from acceptance, possession, use or misuse of any prize. The potential prize winners waives the right to assert as a cost of winning the prize any and all costs of verification and redemption or travel to redeem said prize and waives any liability or claims (including attorneys fees) which might arise from redeeming or seeking to redeem said prize. In the event of non-compliance with these Official Rules, or if prize notification is returned to GateHouse Media as undeliverable, if prize is refused or cannot be accepted for any reason, the prize will be forfeited and an alternate winner will be selected in a random drawing. Upon forfeiture, no compensation will be given. Acceptance of prize constitutes permission to use the winner's name, photograph, likeness, Contest submissions and/or statements attributed to winners regarding the Contest, for advertising and publicity purposes without further compensation or consent. All entries become the property of GateHouse Media. This Contest shall only be construed and evaluated according to the laws of the state of New York, without regard to the principles of conflicts of laws and submission of any entry constitutes acceptance of such laws. This Contest is void where prohibited. All federal, state and local laws and regulations apply.

This Contest is not intended for gambling. If it is determined that an Entrant is using the Contest for gambling purposes, he/she will be disqualified and reported to authorities.

GateHouse Media and its affiliates reserve the right to use any and all information related to the Contest, including information on Entrants obtained through the Contest, for marketing purposes or any other purpose, unless prohibited by law.

GateHouse Media and their affiliates reserve the right to change the rules of the Contest at any time.


To obtain the names of the Contest winners, contact Lisa Glowinski at lglowinski@gatehousemedia.com.


GateHouse Media, LLC and its subsidiaries, 175 Sully's Trail, Pittsford, New York 14534.