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Chocolate Expo Invades Norwalk's Maritime Aquarium With Tasty Treats

Chocolate lovers of all ages enjoy the treats at the Chocolate Expo at the Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk.
Chocolate lovers of all ages enjoy the treats at the Chocolate Expo at the Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
Chocolate is the answer to every question at the expo!
Chocolate is the answer to every question at the expo! Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
Chocolate fans line up at the Chocolate Expo.
Chocolate fans line up at the Chocolate Expo. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
Vendors dish up treats at the Chocolate Expo.
Vendors dish up treats at the Chocolate Expo. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
A trainer puts the harbor seals through their paces at the Maritime Aquarium.
A trainer puts the harbor seals through their paces at the Maritime Aquarium. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
How many kids fit on a seal?
How many kids fit on a seal? Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
Vendors dish up treats at the Chocolate Expo.
Vendors dish up treats at the Chocolate Expo. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
Vendors dish up treats at the Chocolate Expo.
Vendors dish up treats at the Chocolate Expo. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
The Maritime Aquarium is packed for the Chocolate Expo.
The Maritime Aquarium is packed for the Chocolate Expo. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
A chocolate fountain keeps the fun bubbling at the Chocolate Expo.
A chocolate fountain keeps the fun bubbling at the Chocolate Expo. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
Want chocolate? The Maritime Aquarium 'got it' for the Chocolate Expo.
Want chocolate? The Maritime Aquarium 'got it' for the Chocolate Expo. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
Vendors dish up unique chocolate treats at the Chocolate Expo.
Vendors dish up unique chocolate treats at the Chocolate Expo. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
Looking for chocolate? Vendors dish up treats at the expo.
Looking for chocolate? Vendors dish up treats at the expo. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
These vendors recruit a young helper to keep the lines moving at the Chocolate Expo.
These vendors recruit a young helper to keep the lines moving at the Chocolate Expo. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
There's a treat for every taste at the Chocolate Expo at the Maritime Aquarium.
There's a treat for every taste at the Chocolate Expo at the Maritime Aquarium. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
Cannolis are a favorite dessert among chocolate lovers.
Cannolis are a favorite dessert among chocolate lovers. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
Keeping the treats coming at the Chocolate Expo.
Keeping the treats coming at the Chocolate Expo. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
After checking out the Chocolate Expo, aquarium-goers can check out the sting ray touch tank.
After checking out the Chocolate Expo, aquarium-goers can check out the sting ray touch tank. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
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. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone
Crowds gather to check out the harbor seals at the Maritime Aquarium.
Crowds gather to check out the harbor seals at the Maritime Aquarium. Photo Credit: Nicole Zappone

NORWALK, Conn. — The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk offered up a sweet deal last weekend as it hosted the annual Chocolate Expo, where 40 vendors served up tasty treats to thousands of visitors.

Every corner of the aquarium was packed to the gills as visitors searched out their chocolate fix — trying out samples and making purchases — all under the watchful eyes of the fish, sharks and seals.

Everything imaginable chocolate-inspired was dished up — chocolate-covered pretzels and chocolate-dipped waffles, strawberries, rice Krispie treats, and various other fruits. A chocolate fountain was on full display at the entrance — towering over 3 feet high.

"There was so much chocolate, I just couldn't believe it!" said 7-year-old Maggie Thomas. "I begged my mom to buy me chocolate-covered strawberries!"

"All this delicious chocolate and my mouth won't stop watering!" said Cassie Jones.

"Willy Wonka's" original Mike Teevee, actor Paris Themmen, was on hand with his golden ticket and movie pictures autographed for purchase.

"I have never been to a Chocolate Expo before and never imagined being at one, either. It really seems like a great turnout," Themmen said.

Every corner of the aquarium was filled with treats — some going even beyond the chocolate theme. At one vendor there was even lobster mac 'n cheese, and others with cannolis, fresh pies and much more.

In addition to the food, celebrity chefs Barret Beyer of Fox TV's "Hell's Kitchen;" Tony Albanese, pastry designer and former assistant to Buddy Valastro of "Cake Boss;" Larry Rosenberg, cookbook author, owner of Bacon Bites, and soon-to-be-seen on Food Network; and famed mentalist The Amazing Kreskin took part of the stage in the iMax Theater.

The sweetest part of the whole deal was the price — which was included in the regular admission to the aquarium, which offered up all the usual exhibits.

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