KOHALA COAST, HAWAI‘I ISLAND—Itʻs glitz, glam and glorious fun for the “Mystical Chocolate Masquerade” at the 11h Big Island Chocolate Festival April 26-27 at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort & Spa. Attendees are encouraged to dress their best for the Saturday night gala—fancy costumes and masks are encouraged.

The annual, two-day festival offers chocolate-themed culinary demonstrations for the home cook, cacao growing and processing seminars by industry experts, a farm tour and a festive evening gala with walkabout savory and sweet culinary booths, chocolate fountain, entertainment, dancing and a silent auction. Guests can enjoy unlimited wine, beer, special edition Ola Brew chocolate seltzer and beer, iced tea and coffee. The gala also offers VIP seating with two specially curated drinks paired with pupus.

At the gala, a panel of invited judges and attendees will again critique  chef and confectionary offerings while culinary stations will vie in a contest for Best Booth decorated to this year’s raucous theme. A photo booth will stage fun, playful props for selfies.

In its 11th year, the celebration of chocolate is presented by the non-profit Kona Cacao Association (KCA). This year’s beneficiaries include Hawai‘i Institute of Pacific Agriculture, Kona Dance & Performing Arts and Hawai‘i Keiki Museum. 

A general admission gala ticket is $99 with VIP for $169. Also available are specially priced event room packages at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort. Educational activities and prices will be announced on the website. All event tickets are sold online and additional tax and ticketing fees apply. Mahalo to sponsorship by the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority and Island of Hawaiʻi Visitors Bureau. Details: https://bigislandchocolatefestival.com

Kona Cacao Association: The mission and goal of KCA is to promote the cacao industry on the Island of Hawai‘i by presenting the Big Island Chocolate Festival as an educational and outreach opportunity for local cacao farmers, the hospitality industry and cacao enthusiasts. Visit http://konacacaoassociation.com. @BIChocoFest