In Monday's post I asked you to name which item did not belong in Hershey, PA. Now for a rundown of what Hershey has, and the one thing I put on the list that it doesn't. And, finally, whether this is a place for solo travelers.
Hershey has a large amusement park, as well as a minor league hockey team called the Hershey Bears. And a medical center that is the town's largest employer.
Milton Hershey opened a school for orphans that still operates today. And I saw Highmeadow Campground, with its 300 sites, with my own eyes. Who would have thought? A campground at Hershey? (It feels more KOA than Yellowstone in that it is not particularly woodsy rustic. But it's inexpensive and close to the attractions.)
There is a Chocolate Workers Local 464, the union Hershey workers must belong to. And an iceless "ice" skating rink, but let me tell ya, there is no real gliding without ice. Raptors? Yes, you'll find them there. I tried falconry and I highly recommend it.
The rose-filled garden is down the hill from The Hotel Hershey and hosts many weddings. On the way to the new "cottages," which are actually modern stone buildings with luxury rooms good for business retreats, is an activity area with shuffleboard and croquet, along with bocce, horseshoes, volleyball, basketball and tennis. Shockingly non-gimmicky.
There's a spa at the hotel, and the boardwalk and the tubing are at Hershey Park, the amusement park. Harvest Restaurant is under construction now and will open soon, serving food from local producers.
The pond behind the hotel is filled with koi, a Hawaiian fish and the imports I mentioned? From Tanzania, Ecuador and Java? Those are the cocoas you can try during a cocoa tasting made with beans from six different countries.
What doesn't Hershey have that I put on the list in Monday's post? An inline skating factory. (As far as I know.)
And the winner is...drum roll please...
ME! I'm afraid no one guessed correctly and I get to keep the Hershey's chocolate bar. But, as consolation, here is a view of the wrapper I designed, which would have wrapped around your very own imported Hershey bar.
As I've gone on too long already, I will save for the next post descriptions of the two things I think solo travelers would enjoy - the spa and falconry - and the things they might want to avoid.
Photos: Ellen Perlman