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HOT SPRINGS -- It was once again a taste of the sweet life when Cooperative Christian Ministries and Clinic (CCMC) held its "Sweet 16th" Chocolate Festival, a benefit, Feb. 2 at Embassy Suites by Hilton.

Guests lined up early in the hotel's atrium area to taste the wares of a host of area restaurants, hotels and other establishments vying for top-chocolatier bragging rights with cake, cupcakes, chocolate-covered mini-pastries, fudge and more. VIP tasters gathered in a small room off the atrium.

Brad Hudgens served as head judge for a panel that also consisted of Amy Hale, Dr. Randy Hill, Ellen McCabe and Paul Swepston. Attendees voted via ballot for their favorite chocolate treat makers.

Along with the chocolate was a wealth of silent-auction items that wove their way around the room; singing by the Fun City Chorus and the Treble in the Village quartet; and some juggling, magic tricks and balloon-art making by entertainer Justin Time.

When the chocolate cleared, the winners emerged. The National Park College (NPC) Hospitality and Tourism Program captured the Best in Taste award with its Chocolate Meringue Pecan Cheesecake Whoopie Pie while EvilO Oils & Vinegars won Best in Presentation and People's Choice for its Caramel Apple Truffles.

Poverty reduction and charitable health care are among the objectives of CCMC.

Gallery: CCMC “Sweet 16th” Chocolate Festival

[Gallery not loading above? Click here for more photos » arkansasonline.com/29ccmc/]

High Profile on 02/09/2020

Print Headline: Chocolatiers compete for CCMC festival prize

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