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Hundreds of students attend RHA Chocolate Fest

By Adam Bergeron, Contributing Writer

The MUB’s Rockingham Lounge was filled with chocolate enthusiasts Wednesday evening.

Like a scene from “Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory,” UNH Residence Hall Association’s (RHA) “Chocolate Fest” pleased crowds with an abundance of chocolate treats. A special appearance from     star of the night, a chocolate fountain, brought looks of delight to attendees’ faces and gorging ensued.

“Chocolate Fest” was a free event open to all students. Flyers could be seen around campus on the days leading up to the event sporting stills from “Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory” to characters from “SpongeBob.” The event ran from 6 to 8 p.m.

The chocolate fountain was a four-layer masterpiece with creamy chocolate flowing from the top to the pool at the bottom. RHA volunteers standing behind the table took the skewered fruit from attendees and dipped it into the fountain. Surrounding the fountain were trays of everything from strawberries and bananas to marshmallows and cookies.

While the chocolate fountain and strawberry station stole the show, “chocolate shots” and hot cocoa were enthusiastically received. Other available treats included Reese’s, Twix and Crunch.

Chocolate Fest attracted students from all over campus. When the doors opened at 6 p.m., there were nearly 100 people in line. To avoid a fire code violation, MUB staff had to step in and direct the line away from doorways and exits. By 6:30 p.m., there were 250 students either enjoying chocolate or still waiting to enter. The line stretched from the entrance to the Rockingham Lounge all the way to the MUB ticket office.

To please those waiting in the line, RHA volunteers were navigating the crowd with bowls of chocolate candy and delivering hot cocoa.  As the event was winding down, RHA member Kyla Wester put the total attendance at 325 students.

RHA sub-committee member Laura Kopp attributed the immense turnout to the thinking that people like free things and people like chocolate, and it was a recipe for success. This was the first time the RHA put on Chocolate Fest and the members assured it wouldn’t be the last.

Not only will it happen again next year, but also the RHA already has ideas of how to scale the event up to accommodate more chocolate lovers.

RHA members underestimated UNH’s love for chocolate. RHA sub-committee member Nick Alley stated that they used $1000 of the $1342 event budget. He speculated that there would be a budget increase in coming years to help meet the huge demand.

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