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Thursday, September 24, 2015

Visiting The Hershey Story Museum

The Hershey Story Museum is located on Chocolate Avenue in Hershey Pennsylvania. The museum draws thousands upon thousands of visitors to it's doors every year and is one of the very few in the central Pennsylvania area that has hands-on exhibits and attractions for both adults and kids to enjoy.

The museum is open year-round but closed during major holidays. When visiting you can find FREE parking located in the parking garage behind the museum building with handicap spaces available for those who need them. It's a very short walk from the parking garage to the entrance which is located in front of the building.

Once you enter you are greeted by the friendly staff at the admissions counter. Admission for adults is $10.00, children ages 3-12 years $7.50, Seniors age 62 years and older $9.00 with Active Duty Military FREE. There are additional fees if you want to experience the famous "Chocolate Lab" or the "Apprentice Program" for children. 

Once you get your hand stamped (after paying admission) you are free to roam around the museum at your own pace. I love "self-guided" tours and that is exactly what this. You can go as quickly or as slowly as you would like. 

Located nearby the admission's area is something called a XPLOR-O-SCOPE which is really fun to do, especially for the kids. The scope will ask you a few questions and you use the metal wheels to answer them. You will pose for a photo and after you are done...the machine will print out your photo. It's FREE and I recommend doing it because it makes for a nice little souvenir. 

We then headed to the first floor Interactive Experience which is really great for the younger kids to see and do. They will had you a "New Worker Training Card" as you enter this area.  As you go through the area there are activities to do. Once you complete them...get your card stamped and move onto the next one. Once you are all done...they will give you a special stamp on your card telling you that your're hired and you completed your training.

This area gives kids the chance to try out different activities like pushing modeling dough into candy bar molds, weighing candy boxes, packing faux candy bars into shipping boxes and crates, checking out faux cocoa beans being roasted and other activities that are set up just for the kids to do! It took us roughly 30 minutes to get through this section on a non-busy day. 

You will then head upstairs. You can climb the 50+ stairs or take the elevator. Once you are on the second floor a staff member will greet you and hand you an "I SPY" brochure. This brochure has photos of 13 items on it and as you go through the second floor of the museum you need to look for those items. If you "spy" all of them they will give you a special "I Spied" souvenir sticker that you can put inside your brochure. 

We took our time through this section of the museum because there is a lot to see and do here. We learned about Milton S. Hershey's early years and how he got into the chocolate making business. In addition to making chocolate he also had other businesses during those early years too. 

I am into old marketing advertisements and vintage graphics and I really enjoyed seeing all of the vintage marketing ads that were used by the Hershey company over the years. You will see some of these hanging up on the walls and others are on table-top displays. Thankfully Hershey's candy bars are no longer 5 cents a bar because I would be as huge as a HOUSE eating them all of the time!

Another area that we really enjoyed seeing was the big timeline of the Hershey's Chocolate Company that ran down one of the long walls on the second floor. This timeline starts from Milton S. Hershey's very early years and brings you pretty current with today's business. We read every panel on this time line and it took us about 20 minutes to get through. It's loaded with all kinds of information!

If you are a big fan of the Reese's Peanut Butter Cup they have a nice display area just on that!  I'm pretty old and I don't remember when they were 2 cups for 10 cents but my husband said his mother used to give him a dime and he would run down to the corner store just to get a pack of Reese's Peanut Butter Cups every time she got paid. It was his weekly treat as a small child.

One of the very cool parts of The Hershey Story Museum features several exhibits of items that used to belong to Mr. Milton S. Hershey. These items are one's that he personally used or were items that used to sit in his personal home or his business office. Check out his desk, chair and other personal items in the photo above.

On the day that we visited we spent a total of 2 1/2 hours touring the museum. They weren't super busy on the day we were there so we really took our good old time experiencing everything that they had to offer. Once we were done touring the second floor we headed downstairs to do a little souvenir shopping in their gift store which is on the first floor.

You can learn more about The Hershey Story Museum on Chocolate Avenue in Hershey Pennsylvania by visiting their site online. In the next couple of weeks I will be publishing a second post about our visit with some new photos that weren't published in this one. I hope you will check out that post once it has been published too!

Note: You can click on each photo in this post. The photo will open up in a new window and will automatically enlarge itself so that you can see all of the little details up close & personal. Enjoy!

1 comment:

jopb said...

I have never visited the Hershey Museum and I am sure I would enjoy it. I like that I can click on your photos to enlarge them and see all,the details.