Friday, July 13, 2012

Field trip Friday: The Jelly Belly Factory

Nothing is better than colorful gobs of shiny, chewy candy except free colorful gobs of shiny, chewy candy.

Today we ventured to the nearby Jelly Belly Factory with two fun cousins and a grandma in tow.

On the way, we watched the ever-wonderful (and terribly fitting) Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory , the best and only  orginal version with the subtly bizarre Gene Widler.

Once we arrived, I couldn't tell if they were running and dancing from sheer excitement at the prospect of touring a fun factory or  if they were just exhausted from the hour-long drive through rolling hills and valleys full of nothingness.

Either way, they were pretty darn excited.

As they should be. The Jelly Belly Factory is completely free to visit. They give you factory hats, take you on a 40-minute tour through their working factory, and gift you with a small bag of jelly bellies. Today's freebie: chocolate-covered raspberry jelly bellies. Yes.

When Aidyn climbed in this Jelly Belly racecar, I gave him the usual "I don't have any quarters on me" look, which turned out to be unnecessary because IT STARTED FOR FREE. Just in case you didn't know: kids love when that happens!

Don't you love when American history can just sneak its way into a fun field trip?

I do, and I totally plan for that to happen  I'm completely surprised when that happens. :)

I wasn't permitted to take pictures inside the factory itself, but the kids spied some crazy-looking machines packing boxes and big spinny silver things (I'm sure that's what they're called) mixing colors and polishing the beans. The whole place had this heavenly aroma of Pure Good.

After touring the place, we dined on a bean-shaped pepperoni pizza. How amazing is that?

Once we had full tummies, we sampled some of the Jelly Belly Factory's most disgusting flavors including: canned dog food, centipede, booger, rotten egg, baby wipes, and pencil shavings. Can we all just give a big, unanimous yuuuum!

They forgave me for introducing the grosser side of jelly bellies when we filled up bags of assorted beans of much more welcoming flavors like bubble gum, cotton candy, Orange Crush, and cantaloupe.

If you're in the neighborhood (or in Wisconsin), be sure to check out The Jelly Belly Factory.

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