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Local Medina County News

For the Love of Chocolate Festival draws chocoholics

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    Erin Brown, of Medina, makes a funny face in the Chocolate Pie Eating Contest at the 21st For the Love of Chocolate Festival at the Medina County Community Center Friday.

    BOB FINNAN / GAZETTE

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    Buehler’s Fresh Foods made the highly popular Yo Yo Cakes that were a big hit Friday at the 21st For the Love of Chocolate Festival at the Medina County Community Center.

    BOB FINNAN / GAZETTE

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    Judy Hanlon, middle, of Homerville, came to the 21st For the Love of Chocolate Festival at the Medina County Community Center for the Yo Yo Cakes.

    BOB FINNAN / GAZETTE

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    Tarah Kelley won her round in the Chocolate Pie Eating Contest at the 21st For the Love of Chocolate Festival at the Medina County Community Center Friday.

    BOB FINNAN / GAZETTE

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    Danbury Senior Living in Brunswick brought 800 chocolate-covered strawberries to the 21st For the Love of Chocolate Festival at the Medina County Community Center Friday. They ran out in less than two hours.

    BOB FINNAN / GAZETTE

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MEDINA — For anyone trying to drop a few pounds after the holidays, the For the Love of Chocolate Festival was not the place to be.

Twenty-four chocolatiers tempted sweettooths in the overflow crowd. Organizers said between 1,200 and 1,500 people attended the 21st annual event Friday night at the Medina County Community Center.

Two made-from-scratch confections — Yo Yo Cakes by Buehler’s Fresh Foods and chocolate-covered strawberries by Danbury Senior Living in Brunswick — were especiall ypopular with the crowd.

“That’s why I came here,” Judy Hanlon, of Homerville, said of the YoY o Cakes that are similar to Hostess Ho Hos. “They are to die for.”

She shrugged off the treat’s high calories.

“Who cares?” she said. “Life’s short.”

Danbury executive chef Bryant Watson, who dripped the strawberries in chocolate, said his secret was “dedication, hard work and passion.”

He said they brought 800 strawberries to the festival and they were gone in less than two hours.

“They love the food,” Watson said residents at Danbury tell him. “We’re getting some transfers from other facilities because of the food. We made everything there.”

Besides chocolate samples — $10 for eight — visitors could enter the Chocolate Pie Eating Contest.

Medina’s Erin Brown said her daughter asked her to join the competition, but “After having a Swensons’ cheeseburger and fries (at the food truck at the festival), maybe this wasn’t a good idea.”

Proceeds from the night will benefit Faith in Action Medina County Caregivers, an organization that provides transportation and other services to elderly and disabled individuals.

Cindie Schneider, public relations and marketing manager for the chocolate festival, called it a great nonprofit event.

“There’s no agenda,” she said.

Contact reporter Bob Finnan at (330) 721-4049 or rfinnan@medina-gazette.com.

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