By Donna Thornton/News Editor
The Return, an Atlanta-based Beatles reenactment group will be covering vintage tunes and chocolate is likely to cover everything else April 5 and 6 at the Alabama Chocolate Festival in Rainbow City.
Rainbow City Mayor Terry John Calhoun said a great crowd is expected for the festival.
The festival will be held again this year at Rainbow Plaza.
According to Calhoun, a lot of the crowd-pleasing activities will be back this year, including the “Taste-Off” in the old CVS building, the egg toss, the chug-a-lug contest, and the five-foot chocolate fountain sponsored by the Greater Gadsden Tourism Board. The fountain will be in the old Book Corner location.
“The bungee jump will be back,” Calhoun said, as will the carnival rides enjoyed by children, and some of the adults. More than 40 vendors have already signed up for the festival, Calhoun said, and he expects organizers have so many they turn some vendors away as they have in years past.
Southside Elementary fourth-grader Dalton Collins won this year’s contest to design a logo for the festival, earning a gift card for himself and a pizza party for his class.
“I was thinking about how much I love chocolate and my sister and how great peace is and I combined the heart with chocolate and a peace sign,” he said, when asked how he came up with his design. It features a heart-shaped peace sign, dripping with chocolate. His design will be featured on this year’s festival t-shirts.
Leading up the chocolate fe-stival is the annual Treasure Hunt. The first clue was released March 7 and will be followed by one clue each week until the certificate to be redeemed for the prize is located.
Calhoun said he expects the chest to contain prizes valued at around $4,000, and he cautioned those who seek the treaure that the certificate will not be buried, hidden in a tree or anywhere that one must climb to find it. It will be hidden within the Rainbow City limits, and it may or may not be accessible 24/7. Calhoun asked everyone to be courteous to each other and to the owners or managers of property that might contain the certificate.
Whoever finds the certificate should call The Chamber at 256-543-3472 or to let the staff know the certificate has been found, then take the certificate to The Chamber office.
The headlining act for the chocolate festival, The Return, got started when four friends got together to play their favorite Beatles’ tunes. Calhoun said the group is known as one of the best Beatles cover bands in the country, known for detailed replication from the 1960s suits to the instruments.
In addition to The Return, Above the Throne, New Ground and Kate Falcon will perform April 6.
The festival opens at 10 a.m. From 10-10:30 a.m. baked items will be received for the Taste-Off.
Judging will be from 11 a.m.-1 p.m., with winners of the Taste-Off, the Treasure Hunt, the Egg Toss and the Chug-a-Lug contests at 4:30 p.m.
For more information please visit the city’s website, www.rbcalabama.com or call the mayor’s office at 256-413-1201.