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95th Street Farmers Market Vendor Story: Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory

The Naperville Park District’s 95th Street Farmers Market continues on Thursdays from 3:00-7:00 p.m. through September 26.  After a successful first season, we welcome both returning and new vendors to expand the variety of home-grown and locally produced food and other items.

A new vendor for 2019 is Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, bringing delicious homemade fudge that they make on a granite slab. Owner Heather Mansholt will be selling their fudge and other treats at the 95th Street Farmers Market in July and September. 
Heather, her son, Justin and Truffles the Bear

During the month of July, Heather invites Farmers Market customers to join in their annual initiative, Sweets for Service, to support our military troops overseas and first responders at home. This includes not only fudge for military service men and women but also chocolate bones for service dogs. For each half pound of fudge purchased at the Market, Rocky Mountain will give a half pound of fudge to the troops. Last year they donated 200 lbs. Other stores in the Rocky Mountain franchise participated as well, donating a national total of 20,000 lbs. in 2018. 
In September, they will make the fudge to be donated and will bring it to Operation Support Our Troops in Lisle, where they will stuff stockings that will be received by overseas service men and women in November. Heather explained that fudge can keep and travel well, so it’s the best treat to send overseas.

Donors can write a message to a service man or woman on one of these postcards, to be received along with the fudge.

When they return to the 95th Street Farmers Market in September, Rocky Mountain will feature a huge variety of caramel apples. 

Heather is excited to be part of the Farmers Market this year and clearly enjoys making and marketing her store’s chocolate candies. She explained that she joined the franchise 13 years ago: “I love the product; it’s a fun business and a good environment in which to raise a family, with no late evening hours.” The store is located at 2835 Showplace Drive in Naperville, where you can shop year round.  They offer 125 varieties of chocolate treats, including clusters, peanut butter cups, truffles and fudge.
Toys and other treats for sale at the Rocky Mountain tent at the 95th Street Farmers Market

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On Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2011 Naperville Park District officials heard the good news for which they have been waiting for many months: the District has achieved national accreditation through the National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA).

The decision was announced at the NRPA national conference in Atlanta following a formal hearing before the Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA).

Naperville is only the second park district in Illinois to earn this distinction and the 104th nationally accredited agency in the nation; there are more than 10,000 recreation agencies in the United States. The Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies accredits a handful of park agencies each year that have completed a multi-step process involving a self-review by the agency, a site visit, and an evaluation and formal report by the Commission.

“We are extremely proud to bring this honor to Naperville,” said Park District Executive Director Ray McGury. “It’s an affirmation of our high standards and also an encouragement to continue bringing high quality recreation and parks experiences to our community.”

The Park District’s accreditation process began approximately one year ago and included an extensive self-evaluation by staff and a 5-day visit from CAPRA reviewers this past July. Maintaining the accreditation requires annual reports and 5- and 10-year reviews.

Park District staff members noted that the CAPRA process has helped them see the big picture, focus on long term goals and plans, review plans more regularly, organize documents so that they are accessible and useable, and collaborate more effectively with other departments and outside organizations.

Our Mission
We provide recreation and park experiences that promote healthy lives, healthy minds and a healthy community.
Our Vision
To be a national leader in parks and recreation providing and promoting high quality experiences and facilities at a great value to our community.
Core Values
Health and Wellness, Environmental Education, Stewardship and Sustainability, Community Enrichment, Public Safety, Accessibility, Personal Growth and Enrichment.
© 2021 Naperville Park District