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Chester County Press

Hungry crowd swallows up chocolate festival

02/14/2017 01:10PM ● By Richard Gaw
By Richard L. Gaw
Staff Writer

For the fifth consecutive year, Kennett Square was transformed into something reminiscent of Roald Dahl's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory on Feb. 12.
For four hours on Feb. 12, row upon row of cakes, brownies, candies, cookies and cupcakes turned the Reynolds Gymnasium at Kennett High School into a sensory and taste overload during the Kennett Chocolate Lovers Festival, which drew just over 800 chocoholics and raised $16,821 for the United Way of Southern Chester County.
The money raised will go toward the UWSCC's $900,000 community investment that will benefit 27 non-profit programs serving more than18,000 residents of southern Chester County. These programs move neighbors from crisis to independence and touch one in seven area residents. They act to intervene in a crisis, promote stability for families, sustainability for seniors and the chronically ill, and, ultimately, work to transition clients to independence through education.
“Everything we do is dependent on the community, and they come through for us financially, and by volunteering, attending and baking at this festival,” said Carrie Freeman, chief executive officer of the UWSCC.  “We couldn't do this without them. Our motto is 'Together, as a giving community, we can accomplish things that no one person could.' This applies to our mission, as well as our successful Chocolate Lovers Festival.”
A total of 54 student volunteer servers came from Kennett High School, Unionville High School, Oxford High School and charter schools, while 62 adult volunteers also assisted in cutting and distribution.
Thirty-five volunteer judges sampled the entries of professional and amateur chefs – along with Kennett High School students – who submitted 156 entries in the cookie, cake, cupcake, brownie and candy categories. In the cupcake division, the winners were The Gables at Chadds Ford for Ann's Chocolate Cupcakes; Sandra Speakman, for her Chocolate Peanut Butter Kiss Cupcake; and Kennett High School student Madison Bowe, for her Cherry Chocolate Cupcakes.
Cake winners included the Kennett Giant, for its Layers of Love; Sandra Speakman for Sandy's Sinful Chocolate Raspberry Flourless Cake; and student Amber Hawkins for her S'mores Cake. In the candy competition, bakes, a Wilmington-based caterer and baker, won for their Nutfree Dream Bars; Alison Snyder won for her Coffee-Flavored Truffles; and students from Kennett High School won for their Dark Chocolate Truffles.
Cookie contest winners included Kelly Barboni for Kelly's Chocolate Decadence cookies; Roberta Carlson, for her Heaven Must Be Missing Some Chocolate Chip Cookies; and Kennett High School students for their Chocolate Peanut Butter cookies. In the brownies division, the winners were Thomas Pagnini, for his Cherries Jubilee; Roberta Carlson, for her Not-A-Low-Calorie Food; and Kennett High School students for their Irresistible Peanut Butter Chip Cookies.
To learn more abut the UWSCC, visit

To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, e-mail [email protected]