You know it’s spring when the marshmallows start their annual transformation into cute animals. Yes, we’re talking about Peeps. The brightly colored treats, in their chick and bunny forms dominate drug store candy aisles this time of year. But they are good for more than filling Easter baskets. They also make excellent art. For a decade the Washington Post ran a Peeps diorama contest, and since then the art form has taken off. This year, a new entrant into the world of Peeps crafting: The science-themed Peep off.
The “finest (and only…as far as we know” science-themed marshmallow art competition, as its website describes it, comes courtesy of The Open Notebook, a non-profit dedicated to promoting science journalism. TON teamed up with a veritable Murderer’s Row of Peeps dioramists: Joanna Church, Helen Fields, and Kate Ramsayer, who created works like Hamilpeep, Moby Peep and Sweaters for Peepguins to launch and promote the contest. Entries come from all over the science map: some science writers, some graduate students, even some middle schoolers.
And of course, you can’t have a collection of Peeps dioramas without choosing a winner. TON’s Siri Carpenter says, “There is no monetary prize, but there will be homemade and ridiculous prizes and certificates. Plus, of course, a whole lot of honor.”
Voting is open for the Peeple’s Choice Award (the puns, they are everywhere) until April 14 and all the winners will be announced on April 16.
Check out some choice Peep works below and head over to The Open Notebook to vote for your favorite. While you’re there you can also make a donation to keep science journalism alive and well.