Chocolate gravy was made and eaten over biscuits at the Mississippi Marketplace, and chocolate drinks were poured over chocolate cake at Java Jive during the March 11 Chocolate Extravaganza in downtown Hannibal.

Chocolate gravy was made and eaten over biscuits at the Mississippi Marketplace, and chocolate drinks were poured over chocolate cake at Java Jive during the March 11 Chocolate Extravaganza in downtown Hannibal.

At the Mark Twain Dinette, chocolate lovers learned to make cakepops, and at Chocolaterie Stam, two pieces of Belgium chocolate candy went to each of the passport holders at this annual event, along with a serving of gelato, their choice of flavor.

As Moberly, Mo., sisters Campbell and Henley Emerson tried the birthday cake gelato, Campbell happily reported she had bought her mother a birthday present of a ceramic skull at the antique store next door. By mid-afternoon, the Chocolaterie Stam clerk reported she had sold out of coffee crunch and kicker gelato flavors, describing the latter as “our version of turtles.”

Despite all the edible ways they enjoyed chocolate, several women reported their favorite experience was having a chocolate paraffin hand massage at The Powder Room, where they also had chocolate martinis. Among this group were Donna Meyers and Bev Orf of Louisiana, Mo. Meyers was shopping at Dani Nicole's, where she was buying a yellow dress and a scarf.

Also pleased with their hand massages were Amelia DeLaPorte and Sarah Campbell of Hannibal, who later were guessing the number of chocolates in a jar at AVA Jewelry, where a piece of AVA Jewelry was the prize.

Also at AVA Jewelry, Brandy Hurt said she was “super busy with a line out the door” for the first hour and a half of the celebration because, “If people want something from us, they usually come first thing.”

At The Powder Room, Erin Winningham was giving a chocolate paraffin massage to Jackie Bridges' hand, and Bridges said, “It felt great.”

This year the sponsoring Historic Hannibal Marketing Council added another 100 passports for the Chocolate Extravaganza, with a total of 500 offered. They were being picked up or purchased March 11 at the Mark Twain Museum Gallery, where at 1 p.m. Terry Martin and Dena Ellis had only 12 unsold passports.

Although many people order passports long before the celebration begins, some people were discovering it after arriving in Hannibal. Two of them were Bryan and Cheryl Holm of Omaha, Neb. The Holms were celebrating their 10th anniversary with a weekend at Garth Woodside Mansion in Hannibal and were happy to discover the Chocolate Extravaganza was under way. They planned to take the ghost tour with the Hannibal History Museum later Saturday. The Holms have both been in active duty with the U.S. Air Force for 11 years. While Cheryl has been deployed only once, Bryan has had numerous deployments and expects more. This year they will have six months at home together to spend rearing their two children.

Among the youngest people at the chocolate celebration was Adin Reyes of Fulton, Mo., who was wearing new flowery booties bought at Dani Nicole's by her grandma, Becky Gregory of Hannibal. Adin's mother, Corrie, and sister, Dakota, completed their family group. Dakota was enjoying her chocolate popcorn from the Paddlewheel Popcorn and Candy Co., where clerk Kearsten Creason reported she had been busy all day.

Willy Wonka and Chocolate Factory games popular

At the Mark Twain Museum Gallery, the current 10 Toms and Beckys in this M.T. Museum program were helping youngsters try games based on the Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory movie.

Mike Struttman showed his young grandson how to compete in Augustus Gloop's pie eating contest, which was done without hands. Despite Struttmann's demonstration, his grandson was not persuaded to try it.

Olivia Malone stomped on purple balloons at the Violet Beauregarde' grape stomp until she broke one. Teagan Holm and Lilly Youngless were coloring pictures of Violet Beauregarde, and nearby Tom, aka Drew Tweedy, was helping Jorie Thompson play golf.

Reach reporter Bev Darr at bev.darr@courierpost.com.