Long Beach residents got a mouthful Saturday as hundreds flocked the 15th Annual Chocolate Festival.
Attendees bit off more than they could chew as they traced up and down Second Street with chocolate smudged smiles.
“It’s so fun to support the local businesses,” said Kim Jones, a first-time attendee of the festival.
Jones and her mother, Jan, said they love being introduced to all of the things that “The Shore” has to offer. According to Jones, people came from all over to experience the chocolate-related festivities.
The lively atmosphere was amplified during the Hof’s Hut pie-eating contest. Boys and girls of all ages shoved their faces into chocolate pies in the hopes of winning a free cupcake from local bakery, The Frosted Cupcakery.
Excited faces slammed into pies as participants in the contest raced to eat their pie faster than the person next to them.
“This is the best thing that’s ever happened to me,” Dwight Bell said after he was proclaimed the winner of the third, and final, pie eating contest of the day.
Other winners included 13-year-old Andrew Koskela and 12-year-old Sarina Forsyte.
Throughout the day, people visited the many booths and vendors that lined the sidewalks on either side of Second Street.
The Beach on 2nd, a store in Belmont Shore that sells LBSU merchandise, also took part in the festivities. LBSU student Karen Ruhman and Hillside dorms dining employee Craig Orrell served vegan chocolate cookies with chocolate chips, also dipped in chocolate.
“We wanted to make sure that everybody is able to eat and that they can have something good,” Ruhman said.
The cookies were a personal recipe of Orrell that he said he makes for students living in Hillside and sold out at around 1:30 p.m.
Down the street, Frosted Cupcakery quickly sold out of their red velvet cupcakes.
“We make everything fresh,” said Stacia Samartan, an owner of the Frosted Cupcakery. “It’s not like we have a whole bunch extra, so when we sell out, we sell out.”
Samartan said she always loves being part of the festival because she gets to meet people that have never been to her shop before, despite the store being part of the chocolate festival for 14 years.
Rachel is a third year journalism major working currently as the Arts and Life Editor for the Daily 49er. She’s studied at Fresno City College and at Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo where she used to be Editor-in-chief at the Cuestonian Student Newspaper. Her goal is to become a local crime reporter and to tell the stories of her community.
In her, very limited, spare time she likes to spend time with her cat Beans and go to Disneyland.