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Sweet desserts and sweet music by local youth will be featured at Beckley’s 12th annual Sweet Treats dessert event planned for Saturday, May 12.  Local students will perform during the Raleigh County Schools’ Day of the Arts from 10:30 am to 4:00 pm.  The dessert-tasting hours will begin at 11:30 am and run until 3:00 p.m. (or while supplies last).  Activities will take place on the Beckley Intermodal Gateway Plaza (top level of parking facility) on Neville Street (or rain location: on the Transit level by Prince Street).   The Southern WV Preparedness Partnership Fair booths will be team up with the Sweet Treats vendors to help kick off the Rhododendron Festival.

Everyone is invited to visit the plaza to enjoy the free performances by local students.  Schools represented include Park Middle School (band & chorus), Beckley-Stratton Middle School (chorus, band, guitar club), Independence High School, Independence Middle School, Coal City Elementary (chorus), Shady Spring High School (dance teams and drum line) and the Beckley Music & Drama Troupe.

Sweet Treats offers an opportunity for local businesses and organizations to promote themselves or their special dessert recipe, plus the event helps raise funds for the United Way. Dessert participants provide at least 100 donated samples, but they may sell larger portions. Dessert participants include the Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine / Youth Museum, Beckley Woman’s Club, Café 109, Generation New River Gorge, Jan Care Ambulance, McDonald’s, Mountain State Center for Independent Living, Party Foods, Perry Pathfinders Youth Group (PUMC), Queen’s Table, Raleigh County Community Action, Sticky Fingers Apples, Tea Time, The Bake Shoppe, The Dish and the United Way of Southern WV.

Some of the desserts to be featured as samples include brownies, cookies, fruit, fudge, gourmet apples, crème-horns, chocolate-covered peanut butter balls, banana foster, lemon cake, bread pudding, donut holes, cotton candy, snow cones, tea, and coffee.  A few of the vendors will also sell lunch items, other sweets or balsamic & oils.

Dessert-tasting tickets can be purchased for $5 (includes a strip of five sample tickets that can be used for dessert / drink samples, and a Peoples Choice voting coin). Tickets may be purchased during the event. Ticket proceeds will benefit the United Way of Southern WV.

Jill Moorefield of Beckley Events says, “Our committee enjoys teaming up with the United Way, Raleigh County Schools, and the SWVPP.  We are excited to kick off the Rhododendron Festival with this event.” For more event details, visit “Beckley Events” on Facebook or on the city’s website, or call 304-256-1776. Rhododendron Festival brochures are also available listing the many activities planned during the month of May.

Raleigh County Schools Performance Schedule:

10:30 am – Coal City Elementary School Chorus

11:00 am – Independence High School

11:30 – Beckley-Stratton Chorus

12:00 pm – Independence Middle School

12:30 pm – Park Middle School Chorus

1:00 pm – Beckley Stratton Band

1:30 pm – Beckley Stratton Guitar Club

2:00 pm – Park Middle School Band

2:30 pm – Shady Spring High School Dance Team

3:00 pm – Shady Spring High School Drum Line

3:30 pm – Beckley Music & Drama Troupe