Going to Hershey Park with dairy, egg, or other food allergies? Are you serious?!?
Last week, I read a food allergy message board where a woman was wondering if she could take her dairy and egg allergic child to Hershey Park.
I also have a dairy and egg allergic child, and always made what I thought was the natural assumption that Hershey was on the “no go” list. That was too bad because I remember enjoying Hershey Park as a kid.
Seeing that the woman’s query had no responses at the time and thinking about the strong Facebook friend base of AllergyEats, I decided to pose the question there. If Disney could be so incredibly food allergy-friendly, could Hershey too?
Well, our Facebook friends came out with such a wide array of great comments that I thought they were worth sharing more broadly here on the AllergyEats Blog.
Please read on to see the string of thoughts.
Any help for this mom? (I’m interested too since I loved this park as a kid and now have a dairy/egg-allergic child.)
“My husband just got tix to Hershey Park, and at first I thought “why on earth would you take your dairy/egg allergic kid to a land covered in chocolate??”, but from their website, things look very allergy-friendly. Does anyone have anything good or bad to say about Hershey?”
if you go to their website, and click on the food section, and scroll down, they have a listing of all their food places, and allergy listings. We are thinking of going to Hershey Park, also 🙂
Melissa Wasserman Daniels:
We went last summer and I was very concerned as we have a dairy/egg/peanut/tree nut allergic son. I contacted the folks at Hershey ahead of time and they got me a very comprehensive list of what was on the menu at every restaurant and stand in the park. I studied it ahead of time and made sure I knew what and where he could eat. I verified with the manager at each place prior to ordering and we were safe each time (we stayed overnight). I did not feel quite as comfortable as when we go to Disney, but we had no issues and they were willing to work with me. If you have food allergies and contact them ahead of time, they will give you a letter to allow you to bring food into the park. I was hunt around to see if I can find who a contacted and post back.
Melissa Wasserman Daniels:
That wasn’t very hard: email@example.com
Deb Vanderhoven Bowen:
we found it easy to manage as well as they do provide a lot of information. The weirdest thing to manage was that at the entrance your child gets their height linked to the name of a candy. This helps you know what rides they can go on. So my peanut allergic child spent all weekend saying, “I’m a peanut butter cup, can I go on this one?”
The only thing that I can think of, is be careful of all the milk products that are in all of the chocolate. I have a dairy allergy, and it has been really hard for me to find a really good chocolate that doesn’t have at least some casein in it. My daughter is allergic to eggs also. We normally don’t have a problem with the basic chocolate stuff, as long as there is not fluffy nougat in it. Good luck!
I would advise her not to go. I am allergic to chocolate, we went when I was 10 or 11, I am now in my 40’s I still remember how left out I felt and that everything was trying to kill me. Stupid, I know but…
Jae C Jones:
It’s been a long time since I’ve gone there but I remember having a good time! There is a lot going on that I really didn’t notice I was missing out on anything! I guess I’m just in the habit of taking my own snacks and handing off anything I get to my sister. When your comfortable with your routine it’s like driving a car…your on auto pilot.
Melissa Wasserman Daniels:
Tracie-You are right. I think all Hershey’s chocolate (even the really dark ones) have some milk products in them. We stuck to Twizzlers as treats for my son. I did bring the Enjoy Life bars so that my son could have a chocolate treat too.
Cyn- sorry for your bad experience, but food allergy awareness, while it has a ways to go, has also come a long way.
Yes all hershey’s chocolate even the dark has milk in it. and just like any other amusement park or everywhere else you have to be careful of the food. but there’s alot of rides, shows, and a zoo at the park so there’s alot to do besides the food. i’m just not sure i’d take an allergic kid to the chhocolate world ride at the enterence since they give you chocolate when u get on the ride and you exit into the middle of a chocolate store.
hi 🙂 i took my daughter (allergic to chocolate) and they couldnt have been nicer~milton hershey (for those that dont know) grew up during the civil war as a mennonite cowboy (on a dairy farm) and so im sure he had firsthand experience with allergic children, both in his home community (as someone who shares blood ancestry with him) its not uncommon for our children to be allergic to nuts, eggs, bees, dairy, gluten, chocolate~and we make many things daily that contain all of those~so its always a balancing act~to have a special kitchen where those kids help cook, clean & eat safely~milton hershey also started a home (his family homestead) school and training program (workstudy) that has help 11,000 orphans or children in state care~some of whom were also allergic~she really enjoyed the kosher food stand~especially the chicken 🙂
Quite a diversity of opinions, but that’s a good thing, in my opinion, as it allows this mother (and others considering a trip to Hershey) to weigh both the pro’s and con’s for herself.
I applaud and thank the AllergyEats Facebook friends for coming through here and hope this conversation is at least informative if not useful to all. If you didn’t have a chance to share your comments or you’re reading this for the first time, feel free to add them below. Just click on Comments or Leave a Reply and share your thoughts. This is a great conversation to keep going.
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