19th Annual Chocolate Tour in Excelsior Springs Draws Over 400 Guests

Five women walk down the sidewalk on Broadway in downtown Excelsior Springs during the Chocolate Tour
Groups of friends strolled the streets of downtown Excelsior Springs for the 19th annual Chocolate Tour (photo Kevin Morgan).

Downtown Excelsior Springs was a hive of activity and sweetness yesterday as the 19th Annual Chocolate Tour unfolded, attracting over 400 chocolate aficionados and casual enthusiasts alike. With 30 local venues participating, each stop offered a unique chocolate treat, with many including adult beverages like wine or spiked hot chocolate, making for a delectable day out.

The event, hosted by the Downtown Excelsior Partnership, Inc., has become a much-anticipated February tradition. For a modest fee of $25, attendees were granted all-day access to the trolley and could indulge in chocolate samples at over 25 locations. The VIP ticket holders, limited to 50, enjoyed an exclusive three-course wine flight and chocolate pairing at Ventana Gourmet Grill, elevating their experience further.

Two women pick out chocolates during the Chocolate Tour in downtown Excelsior Springs
Delectable treats could be found at every stop including the new boutique, Butterfly Kisses located inside the 414 Company (formerly Fishing River Market) (photo S Jason Cole).

The tour featured a mouthwatering array of chocolate delights, including caramel, glorious fudge, gourmet hot chocolate, butterscotch, coconut, dipped chocolate, white chocolate, and more. Such a variety ensured that every palate, from the most traditional to the most adventurous, was satisfied.

The event’s charm was not just in its chocolate but also in the sense of community it fostered. Participating venues, including Abigail’s Sweet Peas, Atlas Saloon Brewery, and the historic Elms Hotel & Spa, among others, opened their doors wide, welcoming guests with warmth and the irresistible aroma of chocolate.

A full list of participating locations included:
Abigail’s Sweet Peas
Atlas Saloon Brewery
BluBox Boutique
Butterfly Kisses Boutique
Casa Di Vite International Wine Cafe
Copperhead Boutique + Floristry
Cyber Center Computer Solutions
Donnici Italian Deli & Market
Dubious Claims Brewing Co.
E.S. Museum & Archives
Grace Home & Gift
Kilgore’s Vintage & Design
Mind, Body & Soap Co.
Molly Roberts Studio
Moments & Memories
New Age Skincare Spa & Boutique
Other Trails
One Step at a Time Ballroom Dance
Pairings by Van Till
Shamrock Hills Vineyard & Winery
Shabby Chic Boutique & Co2
Slightly Off Broadway Theatre
Solana On Broadway
Sturm Bros.’ Custom Design & Fine Jewelry
Style By Ry
The Elms Hotel & Spa
Ventana Gourmet Grill
Vesta Hearth & Home
Willow Spring Mercantile
Wine & Shine Tasting Room

Chocolate Tour volunteers in the Hall of Waters Visitors Center checking in guests for the event
Event organizers, including DEP Director Lyndsey Baxter (second from left) greeted guests at the historic Hall of Waters (photo Courtney Cole).

Despite the event’s growing popularity, leading to a sell-out within 30 hours of tickets going on sale, the organizers ensured a smooth experience. Attendees were reminded to pick up their official Chocolate Tour Event Badge at the Hall of Waters Visitor Center, without which the sweet journey would not be possible.

The Chocolate Tour was not just about indulgence but also about exploration and appreciation of downtown Excelsior Springs. With the event concentrated downtown and a handy trolley service, participants enjoyed a leisurely day of walking and tasting on a beautiful February day.

A group of 9 friends pose for a picture in front of the Atlas Saloon during the Chocolate Tour in Downtown Excelsior Springs
A group of guest poses for a quick picture outside the Atlas Saloon (photo Kevin Morgan).

Aside from the chocolate, the sweetest part of the day was the sense of community spirit. The tour concluded with a raffle, where participants who visited at least 85% of the stops were eligible for prizes. Furthermore, attendees had the opportunity to vote for their favorite chocolate sample, with the top three locations receiving cash prizes.

The 19th Annual Chocolate Tour celebrated the love of chocolate and highlighted the vibrant local businesses of Excelsior Springs. As the sun set on a successful event, participants undoubtedly left with sweet memories and perhaps a few new favorite spots in downtown Excelsior Springs, eagerly awaiting next year’s tour.

Don’t miss out on any of DEP’s fun events. Sign up for their newsletter and learn more at VisitExcelsior.com.

Deb Foster takes a photo of four women at the Excelsior Springs Museum during the Downtown Excelsior Partnership's Chocolate Tour
There were plenty of photo ops, including this one inside of the Excelsior Springs Museum and Archives (photo Courtney Cole).

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