Annapolis has been enjoying chocolate for at least 270 years. A recent dive in the Maryland Gazette newspaper archives revealed an advertisement from December 1748 of chocolate being made and sold on Duke of Gloucester Street in downtown Annapolis.
On December 2, Annapolis will celebrate by filling West Street with local chocolatiers ready to help chocoholics get through the holiday season. From noon to 5:00pm on the first blocks of West Street, the fourth annual Annapolis Chocolate Binge Festival will featuring family-friendly entertainment, chocolate, holiday shopping and the lighting of West Street's BGE holiday light canopy.
Start off the December holiday season with some fun and indulge your sweet tooth at the Annapolis Chocolate Binge Festival, which benefits the Annapolis Arts District and We Care and Friends. Kids can jump in the gingerbread house moon bounce or roast marshmallows with their families at the fire pit in the middle of West Street with the Annapolis Fire Department. Everyone can drink hot cocoa, visit the blue photo bus, get a chocolate massage at Sadona Salon and Spa, and tell Santa what they really want for Christmas. Santa is also inviting people to drop off new toys, coats and hats to him for the We Care and Friends holiday party for local kids in need.
Take a chocolate tour along West Street with more than 35 local and regional vendors selling various chocolate specialties, including chocolate caramels, cakes, chocolate bars, truffles, fudge, cookies, candies, hot chocolate, brownies and more. Expect to find some high-quality chocolates including vegan, kosher, non-GMO, organic and gluten-free options.
Some of the local and regional chocolatiers attending include Veritas Artizen Chocolate, Dear Coco Chocolate, Heritage Chocolate, Nolia Chocolates, Chocolate Moonshine, Kilwins, The Country Cookie, White Box Chocolate, Cakes by Rachael, Otterbein’s Bakery, Annapolis Caramel Company, Coco Couture, Happy Chicken Bakery, Foxtrot Chocolates, Sweet Hearts Patisserie, Moondance Cookies, Parfections, Harper Macaw and more.
New this year, attendees can stop by the Harwood-Hammond House on the way to the festival for its chocolate history event or Chesapeake Brewing for a chocolate liquor tasting event. The festival will have a chocolate and wine tasting area at Luna Blu, roasted churros outside El Toro Bravo, and an after party at Tsunami.
You can also complete your shopping at the holiday market at the Annapolis Chocolate Binge Festival featuring dozens of local crafts with a wide range of handmade items including jewelry, pottery, candles, wood turnings, glass ornaments and more. Visit the galleries and shops in the Annapolis Arts District along West Street for other unique gifts and chocolate samples.
The entertainment starts off at noon on two stages on West Street with a grand finale at 5:00pm with the grand illumination of the BGE holiday light canopy over West Street.
Admission is a $5 suggested donation for adults (kids under 12 are free with parents). While supplies last, everyone making a donation will get a complimentary hot chocolate at the Dunkin’ Donuts tent.
There is plenty of easy parking within two blocks at Whitmore Parking Garage at 25 Clay Street (free until 4:00pm or $2 all day), Gotts Court Parking Garage, Knighton Parking Garage and the State Parking Garage (free all day) at 19 St Johns Street. Those coming from the West Street at Park Place garage can take the free Circulator bus from there to the festival. A wide range of hotels and bed and breakfast choices are within walking distance of the festival, and other nearby hotels offer a free shuttle service so guests can enjoy a weekend in Annapolis. Contact Visit Annapolis at 410-280-0445 for lodging options.
The Annapolis Chocolate Binge Festival is brought to you by the Inner West Street Association and managed by Evans Management LLC. They also bring you the First Sunday Arts festivals, Dinner Under the Stars and manage the Annapolis Arts District.
For more information, visit www.annapolischocolatefestival.com.