Shoppers will have the chance to check out local businesses and pick up chocolate treats at the same time on Feb. 9.


The Perry Chamber of Commerce’s 16th annual Chocolate Walk will return on Saturday, Feb. 9. Participating businesses will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.


Executive Director Lynsi Pasutti said the event has changed over the years. Last year, it expanded into two days. This year, the event will again be held on one Saturday.


Though Pasutti said the scope of the event has changed slightly.


“(We’re) looking at really trying to bring it back to being more of a shopping event,” she said.


The chamber saw a lot of success with Small Business Saturday, and Pasutti said they wanted to bring that shop local mentality to the Chocolate Walk.


Participants can still purchase a passport for $6 or 2 for $10 at the Perry Chamber or participating businesses. The passport will have a list of the businesses open for the walk.


Many of those businesses will include some sort of chocolate treat, along with in-store specials. Pasutti said that in the past, there were so many stops that people tended to get their chocolate and leave.


“With that in mind, we are tightening the focus of the participating businesses so that they are retail or have something to sell,” she said.


The participating businesses include:Alice’s Haus Dresin - 924 Otley St.Backwards Boutique - 1124 2nd St.Ben’s Five & Dime - 1221 2nd St.Betsy Peterson Designs - 1121 2nd St.Fareway Stores - 1315 Willis Ave.Harper Rose’s Floral & Gifts - 503 1st Ave.Mary Rose Collection - 1215 Warford St.Perry Paint and Glass - 1216 2nd St.Perry Perk - 1201 Warford St.Raccoon River Valley Bike Co. - 1118 Willis Ave.Salvaged Soul - 1114 2nd St.Swan Antics - 1226 2nd St.The Perry Chief - 1316 2nd St.The Scottish Fox - 1118 2nd St.The Shop on 10th (Dallas County Hospital Gift Shop) - 610 10th St.Wenger Auction Service - 1323 2nd St.


Pasutti said while the list is smaller than in years past, she encourages the community to stop in and check out what each business offers.


“This is a shopping event and there happens to be some chocolate added into it for fun,” she said.


Those taking part in the Chocolate Walk can take their passport and get it stamped at each business they visit. Pasutti said participants don’t have to visit every business, but she does encourage them to visit as many as they can.


After the walk, participants can bring their passports down to the Hotel Pattee to be entered into a drawing for a grand prize and Perry Bucks.


“(We want to ) encourage shopping and the fun of it and showcasing what we have here,” Pasutti said of the Chocolate Walk.