1. Re: Hershey Park & Chocolate World questions
You have a very busy schedule for your time in Hershey! If you are only going to Hersheypark in the evening, you will probably want to look at the schedule and see what the time is that day you can purchase "Sunset Admission" or utilize the "Preview" option if you are planning on spending the next day in the park. You may also want look at a combo ticket with both Dutch Wonderland and Hersheypark.
Whichever kind of tickets you purchase, and no matter how long you stay, a Hersheypark day does not require the type of planning needed for Disney World, but I agree that planning never hurts! A couple of hints and answers to some of your questions:
*Hersheypark is very strict about height minimums. I would recommend taking a few minutes when you first enter the park and get your child officially measured. They give them a paper wristband (or something similar...my kids aren't little anymore) and then you won't need to worry about any opinions as you try to board a ride.
*Get the mobile app on your phone to help you navigate the day. It provides interactive maps, wait times for rides, schedules for shows and character meet and greets, etc. You can also use it to figure out which rides each member of the family can ride. It has a lot of information.
*Typical advice that normally works is to arrive early and start at the back of the park. I know it's hard to bypass rides, but you will avoid the longest lines.
*The Boardwalk is least busy when it first opens and last hour or so of its day. Yes, the water is cooler, but the lines in the heat of the day can be awfully hot.
*Everyone has a different plan for food, but I would recommend taking a lunch break (if you spend the whole day) to cool off and relax. There is a full service restaurant just before you go through the gates, Hersheypark Place. You can get your hand stamped to re-enter the park if you want to go there. The food is good, the prices reasonable and it is air conditioned. It's quiet (ish) and a good break in the day. You can also make a reservation on Hersheypark.com I always find it a good way to get enough energy to keep going if spending a whole day.
As far as Chocolate World, I think your kids will love the 4D Show! I wouldn't necessarily recommend the chocolate tasting with little ones. The candy bar making is fun but just be sure you will not be leaving the bars in the car in the heat afterwards... I would also recommend the trolley tour. It is a tour around town, but it is full of singing and acting which is really fun and entertaining, especially for kids. Of course, there is the free chocolate ride :)
I hope you have a great time in Hershey! If you have any other questions, just ask!
From their small beginnings, the company’s now known as The Hershey Company and Mars Incorporated have traveled very different pathways to the international recognition and success that they are accustomed to today. While the Hershey story is that of entrepreneurship, generosity, and caring, the narrative of Mars is quite different, with the sole goal of profit taking precedence and the story becoming somewhat sketchy at times. Both narratives are depicted on their respective websites as the great success stories that they are, but highlight very different paths historically from the very small and local starting to the national and global stages. The differences in these to paths are very much to do with the vast differences of the two leading men, Milton S. Hershey and Frank C. Mars.
The history that each company displays on their website can be found here at,
The Hershey Company achieved its status as an international powerhouse from the genuine business approach of the company’s founder. The Hershey Company got its start because of Milton Hershey’s decision to start producing a chocolate coating for his caramels. From there, he built an empire that took care of its employees and consumers and had a goal of proving the big business stigma, of being strictly for profit, wrong. Milton Hershey was born at his family’s Pennsylvania homestead in 1857. He moved around a lot as a child and went to seven different schools in his eight years of schooling. After trying out his hand in the newspaper business, he found his calling with a local confectioner. (The Hershey Company) After a few failed business attempts, he started the Lancaster Caramel Company and became very successful within four years. After that he started The Hershey Company and when that really took off, he sold his caramel company and focused solely on building his Hershey Empire. (The Hershey Company)
Milton Hershey decided to build his chocolate community into a genuine utopia. He built a whole town around his factory. By 1904, houses for executives and employees alike were built in the surrounding area. They were equipped with all of the newest luxuries and public facilities like parks, swimming pools, and trolley line were built as well to create an environment of happy and invested workers. (D’Antonio, 116-117) Along with this focus on happiness, Milton Hershey also focused heavily on education. Milton and his wife Kitty established a school for orphaned boys in 1909 that would take off and eventually become a free education for underprivileged boys and girls. (The Hershey Company) This focus on education can be attributed to Milton’s lack of education and consistency growing up which was something that he wanted to provide to those boys. Milton Hershey left a legacy of being an entrepreneur, a builder, and a genuinely kind human. Becoming a national power in chocolate production and eventually becoming internationalized much after his death, were just products of the way that his chocolate empire was built from the ground up with good values.
For more on Hershey, Pennsylvania. http://www.hersheypa.com/about_hershey/our_proud_history/index.php
In contrast to Milton Hershey, Frank Mars traveled a much less kindhearted road. Although the Mars website provides information about how the internationalization of Mars came about, it leaves out the very messy happenings in between. Mars was created with the sole purposes of success and profit. Frank Mars was born in 1883 and was taught how to make candies by his mother at a young age. He tried his hand in making and selling chocolates and failed miserably three times before finding success in Minnesota with his second wife and their daughter. His first wife, Ethel, left Frank with their son Forrest, but was eventually forced to send him with her parents because of the lack of financial support from Frank. Frank soon remarried another woman named Ethel and had a daughter. (Brenner, 49-52) This whole story of failure is covered up within the company site. The convenience of Frank’s wives having the same name is used to hide the to details of his failures and bad business. (Mars Inc.) After years away, Forest came back into the picture to help to run the company. He was obsessed with profit because of his lack of wealth growing up and was eventually kicked out by his father. Forrest headed to Europe where he became successful by starting a pet food industry there and by using that to make his chocolate successful. While still being on the outs with his son, Frank Mars collapsed and died in 1934. After being forced out of Europe in 1940, Forrest returned to the US and created M&M Limited while still controlling his European business from a far. He eventually took over his father’s old business as well and created the Mars empire known globally today. (Brenner, 52-69, 179-194)
Both Hershey and Mars both ended up in a global position to not only sell chocolate, but other products that their companies had created or taken over along the way. Each company has become more than a staple in the American everyday life, but the thing that separates them the most is the ideals that they were founded on. The Hershey Company, while not quite as successful in the long run as Mars Inc., was founded on the values of building up a community and a shared investment with everyone involved. This may be attributed to the fact that there was no real competition at the time on its founding, but it was still brought into power with a great deal of care. On the other hand, Mars became an international powerhouse much more quickly but was expanded at a rate only meant for profit. The company has since become more conscious of their actions, such as not advertising directly to children, but it has still had a much different path than its competitor. These differences are not only attributed to the differences in the personalities of Frank Mars and Milton Hershey, but direct reflections on their upbringings and early experiences.
Brenner, Joel. 2000. The Emperors of Chocolate: Inside the Secret World of Hershey and Mars. chapters 5, 13 pp. 49-69, 179-194
D’Antonio, Michael D. 2006. Hershey: Milton S. Hershey’s Extraordinary Life of Wealth, Empire, and Utopian Dreams. pp. 106-126
Digital image. GreenBiz. GreenBizGroup Inc., 31 Oct. 2013. Web. 13 Mar. 2015. <http://www.greenbiz.com/blog/2013/10/31/how-she-leads-kate-wylie-mars-inc>.
Digital image. Hershey The Sweetest Place on Earth. Hershey Entertainment and Resorts, n.d. Web. 13 Mar. 2015. <http://www.hersheypa.com/about_hershey/our_proud_history/index.php>.
“Hershey, PA The Sweetest Place On Earth.” Hershey , PA The Legacy of Milton S. Hershey. Hershey Entertainment and Resorts, n.d. Web. 13 Mar. 2015. <http://www.hersheypa.com/about_hershey/our_proud_history/index.php>.
“Hershey’s.” The Hershey Company. The Hershey Company, n.d. Web. 09 Mar. 2015. <http://www.thehersheycompany.com/about-hershey/our-story/milton.aspx>.
“History Timeline.” About Mars. Mars Incorporated, n.d. Web. 12 Mar. 2015. <http://www.mars.com/global/about-mars/history.aspx>.