Chocolate event benefits Miami University Art Museum, Oxford Community Arts Center

Chocolate Meltdown in Oxford. CONTRIBUTED

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Chocolate Meltdown in Oxford. CONTRIBUTED

Chocolate Meltdown and More will return with expanded hours and offerings this year. The chocolate-themed event, celebrating all things chocolate, is a fun, delicious way to support two local arts organizations — Oxford Community Arts Center and the Miami University Art Museum.

“It’s nice to have an event happening to get people out. They really could make a day of it. We think it will give people more things to do and experience,” said Sherri Krazl, one of the organizers of Chocolate Meltdown.

The popular fundraising event will return to Oxford on January 15 from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. and feature vendors with chocolate tastings, a chocolate bar, children’s activities, horse-drawn carriage rides and much more.

The event has expanded this year with more community partners including Oxford Community Arts Center, Miami University Art Museum, the Oxford Chamber of Commerce, Enjoy Oxford – Oxford Visitors Bureau, Oxford Parks & Recreation and the City of Oxford.

“We decided we wanted to get more people involved with the event, by the way of expanding it to the Uptown Oxford area,” Krazl said, “By doing that, we extended the time frame, and we’ve extended it to multiple locations. So, there is more happening in more locations.”

The Chocolate Meltdown event that has traditionally been held at Oxford Community Arts Center with chocolate tastings and vendors is being referred to as the “Main Event,” which will be held from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. at OCAC. There will be chocolate tastings, a chocolate bar with chocolate-themed drinks (ages 21 and up,) and chocolate sales.

Throughout the course of the event, from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m., there will also be chocolate tastings and chocolate activities at participating businesses in the Uptown Oxford area. Check out who’s participating and find updates at www.chocolatemeltdown.com.

From 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., there will be children’s activities around the Uptown Park area, which will include a Ninja Extreme Course, an inflatable obstacle course, and giant games such as Giant Jenga, Giant Connect Four, Cornhole and more.

From 3 p.m. to 5 pm., there will be free horse-drawn carriage rides available from the Uptown area to the Oxford Community Arts Center.

“Another big change is you used to have to purchase tickets to enter the event, and we dropped that. Anybody can enter the event and participate in any of the activities, but if they want to participate in the tastings, then they have to purchase tasting tickets,” Krazl said.

Chocolate Meltdown and More will feature 15 to 20 participating vendors and businesses. Some of the participating businesses will offer items at the storefront and inside the Oxford Community Arts Center, such as Graeter’s. Other businesses will have Chocolate tasting activities only at their business or storefront like You’re Fired (pottery store,) Wildberry and Church Street Social, which are located Uptown.

You’re Fired will have hot chocolate at their location, and their tasting ticket will be redeemable for a free studio artist fee, for example. The Girl Scouts will be set up outside of LCNB National Bank with hot cocoa. Church Street Social will offer a Godiva Chocolate Martini.

Vendor booths at the Oxford Community Arts Center will include Ruby’s Chocolates, The Artisan Conjurer, Antiquity Teahouse, Katie’s Classic Cookies and 4 Bears Bakery, to name a few. Historically, 300 to 500 attendees have enjoyed the event.

“Ultimately, it’s about the collaboration, giving folks an opportunity to get out and do something fun in the winter, and to create an awareness of the arts organizations, and the collaborations that happen between the arts organizations and the city, chamber and the Uptown businesses. A lot of people get excited about chocolate. We see this as an event that will continue to grow,” Krazl said.

How to go

What: Chocolate Meltdown and More

When: Sat., Jan. 15, 1 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Where: Oxford Community Arts Center, 10 S. College Ave., Oxford; Uptown Park and Uptown

Cost: Free admission. Tasting tickets may be purchased the week leading up to the event during normal business hours at the Oxford Community Arts Center, the Chamber and Enjoy Oxford - Oxford Visitors Bureau offices. Tasting tickets may also be purchased during the event at the Oxford Community Arts Center and Enjoy Oxford - Oxford Visitors Bureau. Tasting tickets are 6 for $5; 12 for $10 and 24 for $20. Tasting tickets can be used at the various tasting booths, the businesses Uptown that are offering tastings and at the Chocolate Bar at the Main Event.

More info: www.chocolatemeltdown.com. DORA will be in effect Uptown. Watch the Facebook page for contests to win tasting tickets. Check the website for the latest COVID safety protocols.

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