Red Hook & the Chocolate Festival | Daily Dose | Hudson Valley | Chronogram Magazine
click to enlarge Red Hook & the Chocolate Festival
courtesy of Red Hook & the Chocolate Festival

Red Hook and chocolate have a history. The Chocolate Factory on Elizabeth Street in the town of Red Hook was established in 1888 as a thriving, twenty thousand pound per day chocolate manufacturer. Until 1924, when refrigeration changed the face of the chocolate business and many local factories were forced to close. Red Hook's factory was sold to the Walker Candy Company which closed in 1932. The factory had other uses, was abandoned, and then resurrected in 1995 as The Chocolate Factory, an office and retail space that currently houses a wide variety of small businesses. One of its newest tenants, Arts at the Chocolate Factory, will host performances during the third annual Red Hook & the Chocolate Festival, a celebration of small village charm, history, and chocolate, being held on Saturday, November 5th, throughout the village. And with a chocolate theme, multiple happenings, and a walkable locale, it’s the perfect thing to explore with the kids.

Organized by the Red Hook Chamber of Commerce, the annual event highlights the town’s beautiful downtown shopping area and the many locally-owned shops there. TasteBudds Chocolate Café on Market Street will kick off the day at 11a with a chocolate-tasting demo with resident chocolatiere and master pastry chef Dan Budd. It’s a lesson on how to taste chocolate, and then visitors can practice with a wide variety of different chocolates located in stores throughout the village.

Check out the Chocolate Wars in a tent on North Broadway, where four teams of girls from the local soccer team, “Vortex”, will compete from 1:30-3:30p for money towards their trip to England by decorating a chocolate dessert. A Chocolate Bomb Skateboard contest is held at 1p at the center of the Red Hook intersection and open to all ages. Sign up at the Boardroom. Stop in at the Red Hook Public Library on South Broadway for the Chocolate Olympics: chocolate jenga, chocolate Pictionary, a whopper relay, M&M sorting, and more. And don’t miss the Fun-Do at the Historic Elmendorph Inn on North Broadway for history, music, and chocolate from 1:30-3:30p. “We would love the name of Red Hook to be synonymous with Chocolate,” says Red Hook Chamber of Commerce President, Sean Jones.

The 3rd Annual Red Hook & the Chocolate Festival is held throughout the village of Red Hook: Saturday, November 5th, 2016; 11a-5p; free (food from vendors and restaurants not included). Pick up a map from a minion! For more info contact Kimberley McGrath at [email protected] / (845) 758-0824. Visit their Facebook page for updates.

Keep an eye out for Willy Wonka and some oompah-loompahs!

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