Food

Join The 'Jelly Belly' Treasure Hunt To Win The Factory

The real life 'Candyman' is celebrating his retirement with a bang - we'll tell you how you can join the fun!



The owner of a massive candy franchise is selling tickets to "treasure hunts," where participants in every state will be asked to solve riddles in order to find a golden ticket. Those who find the tickets will win $5,000 and one lucky winner will get a key to their very own candy factory.

Sound familiar? The idea for the contest seems to have been brought to life from the pages of the Roald Dahl novel-turned-movie/musical "Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory," where a group of lucky children got to tour a magical candy factory after finding golden tickets hidden in chocolate bar wrappers.

In the real-life version, entrepreneur David Klein, who invented the Jelly Belly jelly bean, is the mastermind behind the "boots on the ground treasure hunt," and he's encouraging candy lovers in all states to sign up for the adventure.

video c/o Tricky Treasures

"We've already hidden quite a few of them," Klein said in a video announcing the game. "We're going to be hiding them in every state across the country."

Participants pay $50 to be included in a Facebook forum where they'll have access to a riddle on the date and time the treasure hunt begins. The riddle will provide clues on where the golden ticket can be found. The golden ticket is attached to a necklace that's engraved with a code needed to verify it once it has been found.

Treasure hunters will receive riddles with clues on where to find the golden ticket hidden somewhere in their state.

"Each treasure hunt has a strict limit of 1,000 participants," added Klein.

Once the winner has been verified, he or she will be eligible to join in on The Ultimate Treasure Hunt to win one of Klein's candy factories.

"We're gonna have the ultimate treasure hunt where the winner will be receiving a key — a key to one of our candy factories," Klein said, who's known as "The Candyman."

Klein, who came up with the Jelly Belly jelly bean in 1976, is retiring soon, so he wanted to offer the treasure hunt as a way to spread his love of sweets and give back to those who have supported him over the years.

He's also hoping the contest will bring families together and get folks of all ages involved in something fun.

"With The Gold Ticket Treasure hunt, our goal is to get people out and about with their families. Grandma and Grandpa can even join with the kids and grandkids," Klein said in a press release.

Klein sold his first Jelly Belly beans in 1976 at an ice cream parlor in Alhambra, CA. David Klein/Facebook

And the similarities between Klein's treasure hunt and Willy Wonka's golden ticket giveaway aren't lost on Klein.

"We're looking for you, Charlie, out there," Klein said, referencing the boy in the movie who ends up winning the contest and gets control over Wonka's factory.

Klein's contest is inspired by Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, where a group of children win golden tickets hidden inside candy bars. Beth Coomer/Facebook

We love this idea! What a great way for "Mr. Jelly Belly" to share his love of candy while encouraging families to work together to find their state's Golden Ticket. Let the games begin!

How can you start something good?

Visit The Gold Ticket website to learn more about the contest and sign up to play.


You must have a Facebook account to take part in the treasure hunt.

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