For two days, Oakdale will put two of its trademark attributes on display – Cowboys and Chocolate.
The 21st Annual Oakdale Chocolate Festival is scheduled for Saturday, May 18 and Sunday, May 19 with Saturday hours from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday hours from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Located near the main intersection of Highways 120 and 108, a several block area of Oakdale’s downtown is roped off to contain the festival. Admission to the event is $3 for pre-sale tickets, prices at the gate are $6 for adults, $5 for seniors and free for kids 12 and under with a paying adult. Bring a can of food for the local Oakdale Community Sharing food cupboard and receive $1 off your admission fee.
Activities start off on Saturday morning with the annual 5K and One Mile Fun Run and each day will feature plenty of fun for the whole family. Among the favorites, said Oakdale Chamber of Commerce CEO Mary Guardiola, are the tasty Chocolate Avenue with vendors serving up sweet treats to sample and purchase; the Classic Car Show and the Chocolate Challenge Stage.
Oakdale Chamber of Commerce puts on the festival, with help from this year’s sponsors: Dasani, Sports Radio AM970, KAT Country 103, The Oakdale Leader, Modesto Coca-Cola, KHOP 95.1, and 104.1 The Hawk.
There are arts and crafts, food booths, a special kids area with games, rides and carnival food, a Western area with staged gunfights, a gold panning demonstration, pony rides and a petting zoo, local bands performing throughout the weekend on the music stage, along with specialty merchandise and services booths.
Guardiola said the festival has been a favorite through the years and they have many vendors that return year after year because of the overall popularity of the festival and the numbers of patrons it attracts. Weather has been known to range in the past as well, from triple digit heat to scattered showers. Either way, Guardiola said, people come for the chocolate, the merchandise, the music and the family fun.
“We like to offer something for everyone,” she said.
The weather forecast looks favorable, with weekend temperatures expected to peak in the lower 90s and no raindrops in sight.