Happy Birthday, Mr. Hershey!
Happy Birthday, Mr. Hershey!
Today marks the birthday of our founder, Milton S. Hershey. Throughout Hershey, PA, his legacy radiates in the town that chocolate built. Born on September 13, 1857, Mr. Hershey went on to become one of America’s wealthiest individuals and greatest humanitarians. He chose to build a model community where his employees could comfortably and happily live, work and play. He and his wife, Catherine, left their entire fortune to children in need establishing Milton Hershey School. Here’s a look at how Mr. Hershey’s legacy is omnipresent across our ‘sweet’ destination 161 years after his birth:
1. HIS NAME IS EVERYWHERE.
Hershey, PA is named after Mr. Hershey and many businesses and iconic buildings bear his name, too. For example: Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center is a nationally known hospital and research facility; The Milton & Catherine Hershey Conservatory at Hershey Gardens was built last year as an homage to the Hersheys; and his most enduring legacy, Milton Hershey School.
2. HIS STORY IS TOLD EVERY DAY TO VISITORS FROM AROUND THE WORLD.
Annually millions of visitors come to Hershey, PA to enjoy chocolaty treats and experience the thrills and chills of Hersheypark. Where he was born, how he lived and what he built are all continually recounted for guests in various ways during a Trolley Tour through Hershey and history tours of The Hotel Hershey. A visit to The Hershey Story Museum gives both residents and visitors a robust look at Mr. Hershey’s life, business failures and accomplishments.
3. MR. HERSHEY HAS DIRECTLY HELPED MORE THAN 10,000 KIDS IN NEED.
Milton and Catherine Hershey were not able to have children of their own and in an effort to provide a quality education and nurturing home environment, founded Milton Hershey School in 1909. Serving students from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade from income-eligible families, Milton Hershey School currently has more than 2,100 students enrolled and boasts 10,000+ alumni.
4. MANY OF THE TOWN’S BUILDINGS ARE HISTORIC.
There are 13 buildings or cultural or educational institutions built by Mr. Hershey that are still in operation and open to the public today, including:
1894 The Hershey Company (originally Hershey Chocolate Company)
1905 Hershey Trust Company
1906 Hersheypark (originally Hershey Park)
1909 Milton Hershey School (originally Hershey Industrial School)
1910 ZooAmerica (originally Hershey Zoo)
1927 Hershey Entertainment & Resorts Company (originally Hershey Estates) Press Building
1933 The Hershey Story (originally Hershey Museum)
1933 Hershey Theatre
1933 Hershey Bears hockey team (originally Hershey Hockey Club (1933), then Hershey B'Ars (1935))
1933 The Hotel Hershey
1936 Hershey Sports Arena
1937 Hershey Gardens (originally Hershey Rose Garden)
1939 Hersheypark Stadium
5. THE TOWN THROWS A BIRTHDAY PARTY
Every September 13, the Hershey community comes together to celebrate this amazing man. With sweet treats, music and grateful residents, an annual birthday celebration takes place. To join in the celebration, come to ChocolateTown Square from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Happy Birthday, Mr. Hershey! Thank you for your enduring legacy and giving us Hershey The Sweetest Place On Earth.