Eric Swanson Staff Writer email@example.com
Chocolate fans will get a chance to celebrate their favorite sweets next month, when Ada Main Street hosts its annual Charmed by Chocolate event.
This year’s chocolate showcase will run from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 8, at the historic Ada depot, 300 W. Main St. Aspiring and professional chefs may compete in several categories, including cakes, pies and brownies; candies; cookies of all kinds, as long as they include chocolate; and the wild card division, which is open to chocolate desserts that don’t fit in any of the other categories.
The contest is open to anyone who wants to show off their cooking skills, Ada Main Street program manager Amy Kaiser said Tuesday.
“We feel like it’s a chance for people to get out and do something that they love — bake, cook, show off a little bit,” she said. “And it doesn’t cost them anything.”
There is no entry fee for the competition. Contestants will be divided into three categories — youth, amateur and professional — and their desserts will be judged on taste, appearance and creative use of chocolate.
Each contestant must bring one of their treats in a sealed container for a silent auction, which will give patrons a chance to buy something sweet for Valentine’s Day.
The desserts will be rated by a panel of judges, and the first-place winner in each category will receive an engraved brick in Ada’s Walk of Fame.
Contestants must complete an entry form and return it to the Ada Main Street office, 114 S. Rennie, by Friday, Feb. 7.
The desserts are due at the depot by 9 a.m. the day of the event.
People who want to sample the goodies will need to buy a ticket for $5 apiece, either at the Ada Main Street office or at the door the day of the event. Ticketholders may taste all the desserts on display and participate in the silent auction.
The ticket sales generate some funds for Ada Main Street, but most of those dollars will cover the cost of hosting Charmed by Chocolate.
The main purpose of the event is to encourage people to visit downtown Ada and promote Ada Main Street.
Kaiser said the event offers something for everyone, including cooks and people shopping for Valentine’s Day treats.
“If you just want to enter, that’s great,” she said. “If you want to come in and taste, that’s great. If you want to enter and taste and buy something in the silent auction, that works too.”