We launched our All American Family Summer Challenge-Adventure-Way-to-Teach-My-Kids-to-Love-Their-Land-While-Also-Staying-Sane-and-Having-Kid-Type-Grown-Up-Sized-Fun with a trip to the Utz Factory in Hanover, PA.
What is an Utz you wonder?
Well, if you live on the East Coast then you probably already know that it’s not really a what, but a who.
Utz is the maker of salty, tasty, crunchy snacks sold and distributed all over the Eastern United States. They make potato chips, pretzels, popcorn, rice chips, pork rinds, cheese curls and more. They have low fat snacks, natural snacks, organic snacks, and gluten free snacks too.
We buy them in humongo-saur plastic tubs from Costco and serve them at parties, pack them in lunches, and wrestle them away from Dumb Dog when she breaks into the pantry to get at them.
Since moving East they have become a major part of our in-home snacking routine. And I’ve only just last week realized that I spent the last 11 years of my life pronouncing their name wrong (they are uhtz not oootz, duh!).
Because we like free food any way we can get it we’ve decided to get to know the great US of A better this summer, we took a little road trip to Hanover, Pennsylvania where the Utz brand resides today (it’s been here since 1921!) for a factory tour.
We went inside, and saw how the machines peel and cut and fry and bag thousands of chips a minute.
It was very Charlie and the Chocolate factory-ish minus the delicious chocolate waterfall and the high tour guide.
I wish I had more photos to share with you only I don’t because they didn’t allow cameras of any kind inside of the factory. From what I gather, chip factory espionage is sort of a big deal. I briefly toyed with the idea of sneaking up to kids on the tour and whispering in their ear all old-man-stalker like that creepy Slugworth dude from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, but I got the impression this would result in my arrest or, at the very least, forcible removal from the factory premises before I got my free bag of chips.
I didn’t want to miss out on the free chips.
Luckily they made up for my inability to take photos to capture the experience with free chip samples for everyone in my party (these weren’t special for me, they are part of the tour).
They even let #3 get two bags (he looks especially hungry everywhere we go) and they also gifted us with this huge bag of tasty goodness to give to one of you (this was special for me)as a treat…
Only, guess what?
It’s huge. And heavy. And, um, really, freaking heavy.
So, I’m going to go ahead and eat this.
But, after I’m done, I’m also going to send one of you lucky readers a big box of similar treats without the gorgeous basket and completely unnecessary packing brick.
I kid; there’s no brick in the basket (at least I don’t think so; I haven’t busted it open yet to be sure), but it feels like it, and I’m 100% sure that the post office is gonna charge me an arm and a kid to ship this to someone.
But, because I really, really, REALLY want one of you to have some Utz to snack on this summer, I’m gonna make sure you get a hand-selected-by-Dumb-Mom sampling box and all you have to do to enter is link up to Wordful Wednesday!
One luck linky-er will be chosen and you will be happy. And salted. And good. And I will keep this and any associated bricks.
Have you taken your kids on a factory tour yet? 100% recommend it as a way to pass a summer day. It was awesome (we also popped over to the Snyder’s of Hanover Pretzel Factory in the same town to make a day of it), free, full of learning, fun, and American made chips!
What are you Wordful about this week?! Link up here (get entered to win chips and stuff), then head over to check out Angie’s Seven Clown Circus and all of the super cool posts we’re featuring from last week!