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Annual Uptown Marion Chocolate Walk

By CBS2/FOX28 | Updated: Friday, October 3, 2014 |

MARION, IA – It’s hard to find folks who don’t like chocolate and shopping?

It’s a shopping experience that not only features chocolate but also helps local businesses.

If you’ve ever driven through the City of Marion, you’ve probably been down here: Uptown Marion.

That’s where you’ll find Gae Sharp Richardson, owner of The Chocolate Shop, prepping for a busy Friday night.

“By the end of the end of the two and a half hours we have, close to a thousand people come in The Chocolate Shop,” said Gae Sharp Richardson, owner of The Chocolate Shop.

That’s the idea behind The Chocolate Walk.

“It exposes the people to the different businesses that are here in Uptown Marion, maybe for the first time. They are in because they get a little treat and then they keep coming back,” she said.

It’s a rather smart business move, thanking loyal customers and teasing the taste buds of new ones.

“You get to hear their responses to a product that is made that is near and dear to our heart,” she said.

It also allows Gae to make five to ten percent more profit than she would on a regular Friday.

The story is the same down at The Dreaming Bear Art Studio. Owner, Dori Patrick says the Chocolate Walk is good for small businesses.

“When you’re supporting a small business you’re really supporting a family directly, you’re supporting your local school,” Dori said, and she’s got an artsy treat for those who stop by.

“We will be serving a chocolate cookie that folks will be able to mosaic with chocolate frosting,” she said, because tonight is all about saying thanks.

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