West Valley chocolate lovers rejoice. Your weekend has arrived.

Downtown Glendale will once again be transformed into a paradise of chocolate treats when A Chocolate Affaire kicks off Friday evening. From Friday to Sunday night, the area will be packed with 30 chocolate purveyors including local, regional and national chocolatiers. The event will also feature live music, wine tasting, horse-drawn carriage rides and workshops with romance novelists — all in time for Valentine’s Day.

The event is from 5 to 10 p.m. on Friday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday in historic Catlin Court in downtown Glendale at 58th and Glendale avenues.

Visitors are invited to participate in the storefront decorating contest as judges. Stop by the Glendale Visitor Center to pick up a walking map with the participating businesses listed, along with the official contest ballot. Return the completed ballot to the Glendale Visitor Center by 5 p.m. Feb. 14 indicating your top choice for the “People’s Choice Award.” Completed ballots will be entered into a drawing to win a Cerreta’s Candy gift basket.

On Saturday, two different art events will take place within the festival. First, a Plein Air contest, in which dozens of artists will take part, competing for multiple prizes in which the compositions are done in the ‘open air;’ and second, the First Saturdays event will debut, with more than 20 artists taking part as well as live music performances, all taking place along the newly revamped pedestrian alleyway just off of 58th Avenue.

Cerreta Candy Company is also partnering with the Mayor’s Youth Advisory Commission to raffle off a 40-pound gift basket of chocolates. Raffle tickets will be sold for $1 each all weekend and a winner will be chosen by Feb. 11. All proceeds will be used to fund MYAC’s future community projects. Past projects have included purchasing Christmas gifts for the less fortunate and purchasing “comfort items” for Luke Air Force Base troops deployed overseas.

For information, call the Glendale Convention & Visitors Bureau at 623-930-4500 or visit www.visitglendale.com.

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