Break out your best Charleston and get ready to cut a rug at the San Miguel Resource Center’s annual Chocolate Lovers’ Fling.
Expect to see lots of flapper dresses, bobbed haircuts, fedoras and maybe even a bootlegger or two roaming the Telluride Conference Center on Feb. 6. In celebration of the event’s 21st year, the theme is the Roaring ‘20s. The 1920s ushered in prosperity and Prohibition, women’s suffrage and social change. In the halcyon decade before the Wall Street crash of 1929 and the Depression that followed, jazz flourished, art deco architecture hit its peak, and America found faith in new technologies: the automobile, aviation, refrigerators, and talking motion pictures.
Young people cast off the social constraints of the Victorian Era, women defied traditional gender roles and speakeasies sprang up, selling illegal alcohol to the masses. The 1920s were a freewheeling good time—one that will be recreated from 7:30-11:30 p.m. Feb. 6 at the Telluride Conference Center.
The Chocolate Lovers’ Fling features hundreds of bite-sized morsels crafted by local chefs from The Peaks, Bijou, Alpine Infusions, Steamies Burger Bar, Bon Vivant, and more. Professional and amateur chefs compete for the title of most decadent chocolate cakes and candies. There will also be a DJ, a silent auction, a 50/50 cash raffle, and prizes for best dressed.
The mid-winter costume bash is known for being a raucous, rollicking dance party. But it’s also a benefit for a more serious cause: the San Miguel Resource Center. The mission of the Telluride nonprofit organization is to eliminate domestic violence and sexual assault through crisis intervention, education, and social change.
The Chocolate Lovers’ Fling is the biggest fundraiser of the year for the increasingly active SMRC. In the last year, SMRC served 219 clients overall. Of these, 128 were domestic victims, 24 were sexual assault victims and 67 were other (assault, murder, suicide, stalking, child physical abuse). The organization made 1,970 telephone call contacts, 1,128 in-person contacts, and safe-housed 12 adults and children for 40 nights.
The yearly Fling provides about one-third of the SMRC’s operating budget. Grants often come with rules about how the money is used, but Fling funds are unrestricted. That means the organization can use them however they need to best help clients, including through a crisis helpline staffed round the clock, services in both English and Spanish, cultural outreach, advocacy and support for court and medical services, preventive education programs and awareness initiatives. The organization has a reputation of going the extra mile for those who need of help. “SMRC has a long history of meaningful work in our community that goes far beyond the mission of eliminating domestic violence and sexual assault,” says SMRC Executive Director Mandy Miller. “From helping undocumented residents through the visa process, connecting families with any resource needed—housing, food, school, dentist, you name it—to addressing issues such as suicidality and substance use, we truly are a resource center.”
Tickets to the Fling are $45 and are available at main street women’s boutique Two Skirts or online at smrcco.org. VIP tickets are $150 and include hors d’oeuvres, a private bar and lounge and more.