5 Reasons To Visit Hersheypark Christmas Candylane
I feel like I have been missing out all these years by not going to Hersheypark for Christmas. What was I thinking? And what friends deserve coal for not telling me about it sooner?
So that you do not get left out of the fun I have come up with 5 reasons why you need to visit Hersheypark Christmas Candylane. These are not in order, but if I had to pick a favorite or two, well you will find out.
Hersheypark Season Passholder Tip: Christmas Candylane is included with your Hersheypark Season Pass! Plus your discount still works on merchandise, food, and more.
1. Santa Claus has come to town and he brought his reindeer.
Not only can you visit with Santa in a heated inside location near the ZooAmerica entrance but you can meet his adorable reindeer.
Meeting the reindeer might be tied with the hot chocolate as my number 1 reason to visit Christmas Candylane. They are the cutest things ever! You will want to take one home, but you can’t. I asked.
All 9 reindeer are hanging out Santa’s Stables, yes Rudolph is there too. Visitors can get up close and personal to these guys while learning more about what makes reindeers unique from the trained staff who are on hand to care for them. Someone tell me how I can get this job?
2. Hershey Character Experiences
Look for special photos opps with your favorite Hersheypark characters. Over on Kissing Tower Hill there is a special photo stop as well as character meet & greets near the carousel. Check the Hersheypark App for characters, locations, and times.
We met Jingle, the reindeer, while riding rides over in Founder’s Way. Isn’t he cute?
3. NOEL Christmas Lights Show
Starting at 5pm, guests can enjoy a choreographed light show near the Kissmas Tree featuring over 250,000 dancing lights. The best places to view the show are on any of the bridges in The Hollow. We chose to hangout on the bridge leading towards Kissing Tower Hill and it was the perfect spot!
4. Musical inside the Chevrolet Music Box Theatre
The Chevrolet Music Box Theatre might be your go to in the Summer for air conditioning, well good news is it also has heat! Warm up in the theatre while watching a colorful and energetic show about “The Littlest Tree.”
Doors open to the show about 15 minutes before it begins. The line starts to form about 30 mins before so if you are particular about your spot get in line as soon as you can.
5. Hot Chocolate
Cold weather and hot chocolate go together like Christmas time and sweets. Head over to Simply Chocolate to indulge in one of 5 flavors of Hot Chocolate. I chose the Toasted Marshmallow, while the family picked Caramel, Peppermint, and Reese’s Extreme.
I tried them all, ahem research, and the verdict is you can’t go wrong. Currently plotting when I can get back up there for more. Don’t judge me.
This look is called no you can’t have anymore of my hot chocolate Mommy.
You can also enjoy free refills of hot cocoa and do a good deed when you purchase the Souvenir Mugs. Drink free all day for $12 or all season long for $17. A portion of the proceeds from each cup goes to the Penn State Children’s Hospital.
Hot Chocolate refills can be found throughout the park including near the reindeer and in Founder’s Way.
Bonus: Hershey Sweet Lights
This add-on takes you through 600 illuminated and animated light displays that you enjoy all from the comfort of your car. Tune into a specified radio station to complete the experience with your favorite Christmas tunes.
You can buy your ticket at the gate, online, or in the park at any Guest Services location.
Know Before You Go: New Hersheypark Entrance
Due to the construction of Hersheypark Chocolatetown (cannot wait for this to open!!) the entrance to Hersheypark for Christmas Candylane will look a little different. Guests will enter near The Claw attraction, which is super close to the reindeer- yay!
Tram Drop Off, Ticketing/Season Pass Services, Stroller & Wheelchair Rentals, and Guest Services have also relocated to this temporary entrance.
Thank you to DreamWorks for sending over these surprises. Affiliate links below.
DreamWorks Spirit Riding Free Spirit of Christmas
In DreamWorks Spirit Riding Free: Spirit of Christmas, Lucky and her friends embark on a Christmas Eve adventure into the city to find the perfect gift, but their return to Miradero for holiday festivities is ruined when an avalanche derails their plans.
In the midst of chaos, the PALs meet their favorite singer Sally Jessup whose honest, heartening music gives hope and strength to the stranded train passengers as they try to make their way home.
DreamWorks Spirit Riding Free follows the journey of a wild mustang who could not be tamed. The Emmy-winning series launched in May 2017, with 52 episodes currently available on Netflix and more to come in 2020. DreamWorks recently announced an untitled theatrical feature film based on the hit series is slated for release in 2021.
Spirit Riding Free Gift Guide
There are also a lot of great Spirit gifts that your children are going to love. My daughter has had her eye on all things Spirit at the store. These are her top picks for Spirit Riding Free fans.
Every Spirit fan needs a home for their horses. The Spirit & Lucky Grooming Paddock is not only adorable but comes with everything your child needs to care for their horses. And that adorable colt is in there too! We love baby animals don’t you?
A kid can never have too many horses. I remember collecting so many of these when I was growing up. Eventually, I needed 3 stables to hold them all!
Maricela & Mystery are a great addition to your Spirit Riding Free family. It is one big happy family at the stables.
Maricela can help Lucky take care of all the horses, feeding them, grooming their coats. and of course mucking out stalls. Trust me it is easier to pretend clean out horse stalls than to do it in real life. Less smelly too!
If you have a reader like mine at your house, pick up the Spirit Riding Free: Lucky’s Guide to Wintertime Whimsy. This book includes interactive quizzes about what gifts to give, recipes for holiday treats, easy-to-make winter crafts, and other seasonal fun!
Got your eye on the wrapping paper and ornament? While you can’t find those online you can visit special locations for Spirit of Christmas takeovers!
Spirit Riding Free Holiday Wrapping Carts and Spirit Wrapping Paper
From now until December 22nd, look for a Spirit of Christmas branded gift wrapping station adjacent to the Santa HQ in the following shopping centers:
- New York: Queens Center
- Los Angeles: Lakewood Center
- Chicago: Fashion Outlets of Chicago
- Philadelphia: Deptford Mall
- Washington DC: Tysons Corner Center
- Denver: Flatiron Crossing
On Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays throughout the season, guests can enjoy complimentary wrapping station services and giveaways of the Spirit-branded wrapping paper (while supplies last) from 11am – 6pm!
Spirit Riding Free Christmas Tree Lot Takeovers and Spirit Tree Ornaments
From now until December 25th, Spirit Riding Free: Spirit of Christmas will be taking over nearly 100 Christmas Tree lots in select areas. Visitors can be treated to on-site giveaways of Spirit-branded ornaments and hot chocolate (while supplies last). These events will take place on select Saturdays and Sundays from 11am-5pm.
The areas to find these events are:
- New York (14 locations)
- Boston (11 locations)
- Philadelphia (11 locations)
- Los Angeles (12 locations)
- Chicago (13 locations)
- Dallas – Fort Worth (10 locations)
- Washington DC (17 locations)
Spirit Riding Free Spirit of Christmas is streaming now on Netflix!
Knives Out Movie Review
Knives Out begins like most mysteries with the crime. The wealthy crime novelist Harlan Thrombey has been found dead in an apparent suicide. The dysfunctional family has gathered to give their statements and get their hands on whatever they can. During the interrogations, detective Benoit Blanc shows up, having been hired to look into the death of Harlan.
If the police think it was a suicide, why was Blanc consulting and who hired him? Blanc is certain that Harlan’s death wasn’t a suicide and there is more going on within the Thrombey family than meets the eye. He is determined to uncover the truth no matter what the cost. Along the way he uncovers a lot more than what happened to the elder Thrombey.
Although it follows the general formula of a whodunit, it deviates from the typical period piece by bringing this murder mystery into 2019 America. It combines the fun of Clue with the crafted mystery of an Agatha Christie novel. Along the way it infuses commentary about topics from social class segregation to politics.
As Johnson has been known for in his previous works, the story is set up using the long-established genre template. He then plays with the conventions, themes, and enjoys taking what we thought would be the plot and playing with it just enough to keep us on our toes.
If Rian Johnson’s goal was to write and direct a film that would draw audiences into the intrigue, he succeeded. In Knives Out, Johnson lays the groundwork for the twists long before we see them coming. As mentioned above, even eagle-eyed moviegoers will second guess their guesses at least once or twice until the big reveal.
Knives Out not only offers viewers clever writing and vibrant locations but an ensemble of rich characters that stand out and shine, each in their own way. Scene-stealers like Daniel Craig’s Blanc, Jamie Lee Curtis’ Linda, and Toni Collette’s Joni are energetic, fun, and sassy.
The film’s protagonist, Ana de Armas’ Marta, is easily noticeable due to the stark contrast between her character and the Thrombey family. She is just a working-class girl, who makes the best of her situation unlike the family whom are spoiled, bratty, and entitled. Both Marta and Harlan come across as the most grounded, knowing what life is like without fame and riches.
Chris Evans takes a left turn from his role as the morally strong Steve Rogers to play an arrogant, pampered, definitely-lacking-a-moral-compass jerk. Ransom is the exact opposite of Captain America and that smirk seals the deal. If you are a fan of Evans you will thoroughly enjoy watching him tackle this role and rocking all those sweaters.
Rounding out the main cast are Don Johnson’s Richard, the quintessential, rich white male, Michael Shannon’s Walt, a seemingly joke of a man with a dark side, and Katherine Langford’s Meg, daughter of Joni and possibly the most normal member of the Thrombey family. Walt’s wife Donna and his son Jacob have the fewest lines, serving to the move the plot along. Despite the size of the cast, each character gets their moment in the spotlight.
Rian Johnson delivers with Knives Out. This non-franchise, no canon in sight film is an entertaining crowd pleaser. The two hours fly by as you try to figure out who did what and why. Upon a second viewing you can enjoy knowing those answers while finding the clues Johnson dropped early on that were missed before.
Knives Out is a deliciously fun game of whodunit that will leave you wanting a sequel. And if Knives Out does well enough, we may just get more stories with Blanc.
Knives Out is in theaters now.
Black Widow is set in the two year gap between Captain American: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War. Natasha is on the run and returns to her family to finish some personal business.
We see our first look at Rachel Weiss’s Melina Vostokoff, Florence Pugh’s Yelena Belova, and David Harbour’s Red Guardian aka Alexei. Black Widow is sporting two brand new costumes and we see several moments with our villain, Taskmaster.
Black Widow Teaser Trailer Breakdown
The Black Widow teaser opens with a voiceover of Natasha saying one of her infamous lines from Avengers Endgame: “I used to have nothing, but then I got this job, this family. But nothing lasts forever.” Along with it, we see several clips of Natasha throughout her tenure in the MCU. Including Age of Ultron’s Red Room scene.
Then it jumps to the “present day” of the film and we see Thunderbolt Thaddeus Ross. He says “heard you had to leave in a hurry.” This could be from a flashback or something else entirely because as of right now she is on the run from Ross. The military presence in this scene shows that he could be on his way to hunt her down.
Yelena Belova is waiting for Natasha when she enters an apartment. They call each other sis after their brutal fight that ends in a stalemate.
Black Widow’s new suit is shown briefly when she is standing in the foreground while the wreckage of what looks to be a Quinjet smokes behind her.
Black Widow fans will immediately recognize the Red Room, aka the secret Soviet training program that produced Black Widow agents, like Natasha. We have seen glimpses of it in Age of Ultron and the flashback that plays at the start of the trailer.
In one shot someone who looks like Natasha is standing in a control type room. The red dots could mean incidents happening in the present or this is another flashback to a mission of hers in the past. We also see a room full of fierce Black Widows in training. Her sister Yelena seems less than thrilled they have ended up back where it all started.
Black Widow’s second new suite is white, and seeing the snowy landscape makes sense. You wouldn’t want to wear black with almost everything around you is white.
Taskmaster is the villain in Black Widow. In the comics, Taskmaster is a super-soldier with photographic reflexes. That means he can instantly learn new fighting abilities just by seeing them.
Next we see Melina Vostokoff. In Marvel Comics, Melina is a villain called the Iron Maiden. In this trailer she seems to be on the side of Natasha and Yelena. However, this could be pre-Iron Maiden days or she could be acting as a double agent. Keep an eye on her, she is the most likely to betray Natasha.
The Red Guardian is coming out of retirement now that the family is all back together. Alexei is happy it still fits but the rest smirk that he has gotten fat. Well as longs as he is still a highly skilled athlete (maybe not) and a master in hand to hand combatant we should be good.
Then we come to a fight between Taskmaster and Red Guardian. Where are the Widows? And why are they fighting one-on-one? We don’t know yet but it could have big implications for Natasha.
Black Widow jumps out of a plane, chased by Taskmaster’s Soldiers. Their helmets have a skull-like appearance just like Taskmaster. Eagle eyed fans might also find that these are similar to Crossbones‘ look in Civil War. Which could point to a connection between him, Taskmaster, and the group that took over to fill Hydra’s void.
Black Widow is in theaters May 1, 2020
Black Widow Teaser Trailer Reaction
It is that special time of year. Grab the kids and experience the magic of Santa HQ by HGTV! This one of a kind event is something our family looks forward to every year. From the giggles created by the naughty or nice meter to selfie-ing it up with Elf ID cards, Santa HQ takes visiting Santa to a whole other level.
This post is sponsored. All opinions are my own, I promise. I don’t want to end up on the naughty list!
Santa HQ by HGTV
Santa HQ is the perfect way to kick-off your holiday season. It’s not just about meeting the big man himself but having special moments with your family along the way. HGTV incorporates special mobile apps, social-media-ready opportunities, and augmented reality for an immersive, interactive holiday experience.
HGTV’s Santa HQ connects shoppers and visitors to the HGTV brand experience on the local level in communities all across the United States. Santa HQ is presented at 15 of Macerich’s top properties in the U.S. including: California, Arizona, Chicago, Metro New York, and the Washington, D.C. corridor.
HGTV Santa HQ Features
When you visit a Santa HQ by HGTV you aren’t just standing around waiting to see Santa. That is what I did as a kid. Now, my kids are enrolling in Santa’s Elf Academy, and learning what it takes to be a part of Santa’s team. This interactive queue makes waiting no big thing and lots of fun.
After you check in, you need to see if you are naughty or nice. The Naughty or Nice O’Meter is ready to see which list you belong to. Then head into the Elf Academy itself for a little Magic Mirror and Elf-ID magic.
You can’t be a member of Santa’s Squad without an official Elf ID Card. Customize your card using the app and your best selfie. Choose from one of four cards to customize, fill out special fields with your holiday favorites, and then email it to print out at home.
Over at the Magic Mirror, smile it is time to transform into one of Santa’s elves. Virtually try on several elf outfits and pose for photos. The images can be emailed to you to enjoy all season long.
Then head into Santa’s Observatory exploring with Elf-Ray Vision, an app that triggers an augmented reality experience. Santa’s Elves have tablets for you to use. Look for triggers at the entrance, in the workshop, underneath the Christmas Tree, and in the observatory!
Don’t forget to check the radar, candy cane stocks, and more at the Control Center.
And then, it is time. Santa is waiting just around the corner! With all the fun of Santa HQ your kids won’t even realize they were waiting at all. Which means no whining kids and everyone is happy when they make it to Santa. Look at those smiles!
Spend less time in line. Purchase Fast Pass today!
Upgrade your Santa HQ experience by grabbing a Fast Pass. When you purchase a Santa HQ Fast Pass, you can select a date and time for your Santa visit. Pre-pay online for your photos, upgrade your package in advance, and opt-in to receive text reminders about your Fast Pass window.
Visit TysonsCornerCenter.com/SantaHQ to secure a Fast Pass and pre-purchase a photo package.
Holiday Giving Drive
Visitors to Santa HQ will also be able to enjoy the holiday spirit of giving through HGTV’s Help Through Holiday Giving Drive. The program encourages visitors to donate new, unwrapped toys for local children in need with the goal of collecting over 1,000 toys per center. In 2016, HGTV’s Help Through Holiday Giving program collected over 66,000 toys benefiting local organizations like Forgotten Angel Tree, Salvation Army Angel Tree, Toys for Tots, and Spark of Love Stuff a Bus.
Check out our visit to Santa HQ