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Vancouver's Hot Chocolate Festival set to return for 2021

Richmond's Origo Club was among the participants in the 2020 Hot Chocolate Festival. The month-long celebration of the wintertime classic drink is set to take place Jan. 16-Feb.14, 2021. Photo courtesy Origo Club

While most events have had to rethink how they operate in order to go on or cancel entirely, there's some sweet news for chocolate lovers in Vancouver for this new year. The city's popular annual Hot Chocolate Festival is poised to return for 2021, though we may all be enjoying our cups of cocoa to go or at home.

The month-long event is undoubtedly the sweetest way to count down to Valentine’s Day as restaurants, cafes, and treat shops all around town come up with original cocoa concoctions and specials to please your sweet tooth. Fans of the warming, chocolatey bev can get their hands on the drinks of their choosing by simply visiting a participating location. 

Late last year, organizers indicated the plan was to give Vancouverites something sweet to savour in some of the chilliest weeks of the season by running the Hot Chocolate Festival on its anticipated and usual dates - the month leading up to Valentine's Day. 

"The official dates for 2021 have been set for January 16 to February 14. We will keep you informed regarding all changes and updates as they occur," said organizers Nov. 29 on the fest's social media feed.

Some modifications likely due to public health orders

And so far, it appears it's a go, though we don't know just yet which venues will be participating and what restrictions will be necessary to ensure the "event" can be carried out safely and in compliance with the province's public health orders. 

"Everything we do must be 100% compliant with the restrictions set by the BC Health Authorities. No one knows where exactly we will be in January so it's entirely possible that we may have to offer takeout drinks only, or shift the dates a bit, or even close down entirely," continued the Hot Chocolate Fest back at the end of November.

"But if all goes well, you can expect to see almost all your favourite vendors from last year plus some exciting newcomers doing their best to make a festival that is as creative, fun and safe for you as possible."

With current public health orders set to expire on Jan. 8, what the next few weeks will look like in B.C. should be a little clearer in the coming days, and hopefully the Hot Chocolate Fest will get underway as planned on the 16th. That means you can expect to see an announcement soon of all the participating spots, along with what incredible cocoa creations they’ll be pouring this winter for the fest, in the coming days, too.