Tasty night benefits Safe Passage

By Rasmieyh Abdelnabi

Some may have thought they were in heaven Saturday evening at Safe Passage’s third annual fundraiser “Evening of Chocolate.”

Attendees were invited to feast upon table after table of chocolate cakes, brownies, cookies and other chocolate dishes. They also were invited to participate in a silent auction that included more than 20 collectors’ dolls and gift certificates from local businesses.

The event was not just a fundraiser, but also a way of promoting Safe Passage.

“Domestic violence is one of those things that a lot of people who are not involved in it don’t want to think about because it’s painful,” said Cynthia Folgate, community resources director for Safe Passage.

The mission of the evening was to get the word out about Safe Passage in a fun, social atmosphere because domestic violence is always a hard subject to broach, Folgate said.

Sometimes she meets someone who does not know what Safe Passage is, so until that stops happening, the agency will continue to promote and advocate through events such as these, Folgate said.

“We want everyone who’s a victim of domestic violence or sexual violence to know that there is help,” she said.

DeKalb resident Kevin Braden came to support Safe Passage. He said he learned about the organization last week. It didn’t hurt chocolate was on the menu.

“My wife loves chocolate; my mother-in-law and I have to admit, so do I,” Braden said.

The evening included a competition called the Chocolatier’s Challenge, where residents of DeKalb County were invited to submit chocolate dishes, both dessert and non-dessert. The entries included, but was not limited to cakes, cookies, chocolate chili and pizza.

Karen Roush of Sycamore made a batch of “Mom’s Easy No-Fail Fudge” and won an award in the Community Chocolatiers division. This is the second year Roush attended the event, not just to support Safe Passage, but also because she loves chocolate.

Roush’s daughter, Corie Wild of DeKalb, won the People’s Choice Award for her batch of Chocolate Insanity brownies.

“It’s awesome,” Wild said. “I’m very excited. I love to cook.”