Thursday, July 7, 2011

The Chocolate Man

The Chocolate Man
I have been trying to keep you informed of our trip and where we have been going, and I have occasionally tried to entertain when amusing things have happened. With this entry the teacher is coming out and I'm going to give you an education on the famous chocolate maker, Mr. Hershey.

Our route across the US took us right through Pennsylvania, and Dad wanted to spend some time in Amish country, so we also decided to go to Hershey and visit the Chocolate Attractions. Regis and I have been through Hershey on other trips, but have never stopped.

We found a campground that was conveniently located close to the Hershey attractions, got set up and went in to see what was there. We could have gone to the huge amusement park "Hershey Park", but I was the youngest of the Hill children (Dad tried to check me into campgrounds as a child to no avail), so we decided to skip the amusement park. Right across the road was "Chocolate World", and in there we went through a virtual tour of the Hershey factory, and booked at trolley ride through Hershey.

Regis & I toured the actual Valor chocolate factory in Spain, and the virtual tour was better than the real one, because the plant was not working when we went through, so we didn't see the actual process. Here in Hershey, the virtual tour showed all the steps clearly.

OK, here comes the educational content . . .

Did you know that Mr. Hershey went bankrupt four times before he became successful?

Did you know that he started out making caramels and only switched to chocolate when he discovered that the Europeans were buying his caramels and covering them with chocolate (probably from the factory we toured in Spain)?

Did you know that many of the streets in Hershey are named with chocolate themes?

Did you know that the street lamps in Hershey are shaped like Hershey Kisses?

Did you know that during the Great Depression, Mr. Hershey single handedly kept the city of Hershey going by sponsoring building projects? He built a huge high school, a sports arena, a hospital, and a large expansion to his factory.

Did you know that because he and his wife could not have children, he built and operated a orphanage for boys (because they were harder to place), and a private school for them that still operates? To this day, Each boy who graduates is given $100.00 to get him started in life. (when it started $100 was a big sum, so although the amount remains the same they have now have other programs that supplement it.) If they maintain a "C" or above they can get a college bursary.

We learned a lot about the man who created the Hershey empire. I hope you have now learned a bit as well from my blog.


  1. There is a Hershey in Cuba. It is where they got their sugar. He built an industry, a factory, a town, a railroad and a park. After the revolution, the Cuban gov wanted to rename the town after a Cuban hero, but the people refused and kept the name Hershey. The park was taken over by the gov and remains a popular place for Cubans to go.

  2. By the way Deej is Debbie Reeves

  3. Art,
    The Hershey Bears franchise, owned and operated by HERCO (Hershey Entertainment and Resorts Company) has been in the American Hockey League since 1938.
    The Bears, the longest-existing member of the AHL and currently the top professional affiliate of the Washington Capitals, are the reigning, back-to-back Calder Cup Champions (and have won eleven league titles, the most in the AHL).
    Hershey left an incredible legacy.

  4. Hmmm and I thought they just made great chocolate! Oh well ... that's what I love him for!