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Back and Better: Chocolate Festival reaches 20 years

Back and Better: Chocolate Festival reaches 20 years

Visitors stroll along the streets lined with booths, from food to merchandise vendors, in addition to the wide variety of chocolate offerings on the well-traveled Chocolate Avenue.

POSTED May 14, 2013 10:41 p.m.

It’s almost here – and chocolate lovers can’t wait.

The 20th annual Oakdale Chocolate Festival – known now as ‘Cowboys and Chocolate’ – will be staged in downtown Oakdale on Saturday and Sunday. This longstanding festival serves up something for everyone in the family and draws thousands of visitors annually to the Cowboy Capital of the World.

Hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday and the festival is set up along Yosemite Avenue and stretches from West F to past West H, with the kids area set up near the Sierra Railroad Dinner Train.

There are arts and crafts, there is the must-see Chocolate Avenue with samples and chocolate delicacies, there are the chocolate challenges on stage throughout the day, and a classic car show. Food booths, local bands, specialty merchandise and the Saturday morning runs add up to a busy weekend. There are also Western performances, the kidsland that features rides and games for the younger set and more food choices than you can possibly eat over two days.

You can pre-purchase tickets for $3, cost at the gate is $5 for adults, $4 for seniors and 12 and under admitted free. Bringing a can of food for donation to the local food bank will get you a dollar off admission at the gate the day of the festival.

The Oakdale Chocolate Festival is pet-friendly, but no coolers, bicycles, skateboards or skates are allowed in through the gates.

Put on by the Oakdale Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Bureau, CEO Mary Guardiola said the festival committee has worked hard and long to put all the pieces into place for a great festival.

Celebrating its 20th anniversary year, she said organizers are looking for a good turnout, lots of great music, food, fun and lots of business for returning and new vendors.

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