Columbia County residents with a sweet tooth can head to Savannah Rapids Pavilion on Friday to sample tasty treats while helping area children in need.
Child Enrichment Inc. will play host to the 13th annual Art of Chocolate form 7 to 11 p.m. It's the first time the event will be held in Columbia County.
"It's a cocktail dinner party ... with an art auction and a dessert competition," said Dan Hillman, the executive director of Child Enrichment.
Child Enrichment serves abused, abandoned and neglected children in the area.
"It's not an educational event about the mission," Hillman said. "It's really about having a great evening and just thanking (guests) for attending."
At least 10 chefs will participate in the dessert competition. The chefs who will attend include those from La Maison, La Bonbonniere, Cutie Pies, Bistro 491, Jackie M's, Lorraine Griffin, Boll Weevil, Eddie Walker's, Augusta Technical Institute school of Culinary Arts and Bruster's Old Fashioned Ice Cream.
The chefs will be judged on best dessert, best presentation and most creative dessert.
"The people who attend vote on which is their favorite dessert in those three categories," Hillman said. "It's amazing what they come up with."
The chefs will hand out between 100 and 200 pieces of dessert for guests to sample, he said.
One year, a chef created a top hat made of chocolate with chocolate-covered strawberries. Last year, a chef made chocolate-covered chilly peppers, Hillman said.
Chocolate isn't required for all the desserts, but up to 90 percent of the desserts presented are made from it, Hillman said.
The black-tie-optional event also will feature food from Berry's Catering and Floral, a silent auction featuring professional and children's art and a raffle with earrings from Windsor Jewelers. The Toasters will perform a variety of music, including light rock and jazz.
"It's an open bar, and it's phenomenal food and special dessert treats," he said.
"You just can't get those everyday. The music is wonderful."
Last year, 215 people attended, and Hillman is hoping for about 275 this year.
Tickets cost $50 and can be purchased at Cudos on Augusta West Parkway, La-Z-Boy furniture Galleries on Washington Road in Evans, all locations of the CSRA Federal Credit Union, Augusta Metro Federal Credit Union on Lumpkin Road, Ladybug's Flowers and Gifts on Furys Ferry Road, and by calling Child Enrichment at (706) 737-4631.
All proceeds will benefit Child Enrichment, the Child Advocacy Center and the Court Appointed Special Advocate program.
Log on to www.childenrichment.org or call (706) 737-4631.
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