0079 A town that chocolate built (USA 044—revisit)

Hershey Travel Blog

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Next day, I try to squeeze in yet another town before going to work.  This one definitely has some character to it.  In fact, it almost outshines its Mother City, Harrisburg.  This town is Hershey, Pennsylvania. 

 Now for all of you who don’t know your chocolate history, Hershey chocolate was invented by a guy named, well, Hershey… He built a factory here in the Harrisburg suburbs.  But he didn’t just want to build a factory.  He wanted his workers to have much more than just jobs with paychecks.  He wanted them to have fun.  So he had an amusement park built especially for his workers--  which is now one of the main attractions of Central Pennsylvania.  He had a hospital built too keep his workers and their families healthy, which is still considered the best in the region… and he had a town built with large, middle class homes for his workers to live in.

 And this all happened some 80 years ago, when many factory workers lacked even the most basic services.  Truly Milton Hershey a pioneer of his time…

 Anyways, to this day you can still enjoy the fruits of his investment.  The tiny town of Hershey has an amusement park, a zoo,  a stadium, a concert arena, a large hospital and golf courses just a short walk from the old factory… It’s Main Street looks like a beautiful Big City Main Street with giant Hershey kisses as street lights… and the side streets are lined with old, but well maintained houses.  There is little sign of decay anywhere…

 It seems like Milton Hershey’s dream of a Very Happy Town built on Chocolate has still been kept alive.

 Nowadays, of course, Hershey is a global and rather impersonal corporate empire just like any other.   At any moment they might, lay off their workers, shut down their factory here in Hershey because its cheaper to make chocolate elsewhere… But for now the town of Hershey is still a beautiful reminder of a boss who really, really cared about his employees…

 Hershey also brings back memories of summer of 2001 when I brought my wife here to Hershey park.  It was one of our many very memorable experiences together during our “honeymoon year”…


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Hershey
photo by: voordax