Hershey’s Chocolate World
An entire world filled with chocolate – can the human mind even comprehend such a wonderful place?!

I have nearly non-existant memories of coming here as a kid – I was probably about six years old, so I basically remember whatever scenes the postcard souvenirs that I held onto depicted for me … there was a lot of chocolate, some singing animals were involved, and that’s about the extent of it. Still, just the mere concept of this place sounds incredible, so I knew that we had to go there! Apparently there’s also a nearby amusement park which features lots of crazy rides for me to get sick on, which didn’t end up mattering anyways because of travel times, but at least we got to the important one…

A Factory Tour with Singing Cows
Despite being one of those attractions that’s supposed to captivate the entire audience with its fun story about how Hersheys makes bajillions of pounds of chocolate every year, I think my reaction to this ride was probably pretty much the same as it was over twenty years ago … “Where’s the candy? When do we get to see the candy?! I want candy!!!”

I mean, not that these cows weren’t plenty informative, but when the gift shop next door boasts chocolate as far as the eye can see, you’ve basically got yourself a fool’s errand actually trying to “educate” anyone with that kind of pressure looming. Sorry, ladies…

Frankly, I had such a blast here that I think I’m going to have to do a separate post explicitly of the fun and yummy stuff that we were tempted to buy while perusing the multiple gift shops inside the bigger gift shop! Needless to say, more was purchased than just the wonderful candy-themed fudge that you see below.

Make Your Own Candy Bar
Our last stop before returning back to the open road was a quick tour that offered what seemed like a pretty neat opportunity for us to have a stab at designing our very own candy bars, from flavors of chocolate to fillings to even the outside packaging. And this more or less was pretty sweet, except for three or four short exceptions that followed us pretty much through the entire process…

You see, Hersheys is very direct with their instructions that only people who buy tickets may go through the tour, which makes sense, seeing as said ticket pays for the candy bar that you’re making and the whole point of the tour is to make money. They don’t make any money off of people who just want to walk through without actually buying a bar for themselves – fair enough.

Well, fair for them; not fair for people like us who have to tolerate unsupervised kids who are screwing around the entire time because their parents sent them in by themselves so that they wouldn’t have to pay an extra $14 for themselves. I hate to say it, but it really took away from our own experience because he had kids knocking into us, cutting ahead of people, pushing buttons that they shouldn’t, and generally just doing things that the whole concept of parental supervision is intended to address! Worse yet, the employees themselves didn’t really know how to react, so they pretty much just let them do whatever in hopes that they’d move along to the next station and become the next person’s problem soon…

Anyways, the tour was fun and we did our best to tune out the little hellraisers in front of us, but by the time we had our personalized candy bars in hand, we were certainly happy to be out the door and back on the road! Our next stop was Sara’s brother’s house, and with a huge bag full of candy to get his kids all hopped up on sugar, we knew that he’d be looking forward to our arrival with bells on!

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