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Jul 22, 2008 04:01 PM

Dutch Wonderland's Glatt Kosher Eatery

I've been to DW for the past three years, and must tell you that the food is terrible, and the place is a massive ripoff.

Grilled chicken wrap - very little chicken, some shredded lettuce, and a mouthful of wrap bread.

Falafel - three balls with about a tablespoon of salad.

A hot dog is a safe bet, but costly, and the chicken nuggets are standard Kosher Delight frozen fare.

So you're better off bringing food from home and eating it in your motel.

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  1. How is the food in Hershey's eatery?Is it any better?I expect to be there at the end of August.Thank you in advance.

    1 Reply
    1. re: momrn

      Ridiculously overpriced. Our last experience was this past Sukkot. Um...I was furious that I had spent the money. I wish they cared just a little bit more about pleasing the public for the prices they charge.

    2. We just visited Dutch Wonderland and planned to eat from the takeout place there. Only one person in our group got food from there. The chicken had been sitting in a warming light thing all day. When I asked when it was made, at 6pm, they told me it had been made in the morning. Decision made - we bought salad fixings, and other goodies at Weis Market and headed back to our hotel.

      I actually thought that the Dutch Wonderland prices were a bit cheaper than standard amusement park fare...and some were right on par.

      3 Replies
      1. re: hindyg

        When is themepark food ever priced well? Have you ever been to Disney and spent $2.50 on a water that you can buy for 40 cents at a supermarket. I have gone multiple times with my family to Dutch Wonderland and it is a pleasure to at least have a kosher option to eat with the kids. It is a great service that the local Lancaster Jewish Community provides and I am sure that it helps support the community. Yes, the food is not the best, but lets be realistic this is not Prime Grill, it is themepark food.

        1. re: LA Hungry

          I have no problem supporting the community and paying more for the privilege of in-park food, but the food was not acceptable by most standards on Sukkot. We have done a community food option on other trips and paid a lot more than we would normally, but the quality was good. That's all I'm saying. There is a limit to what you're willing to put up with for that kind of money. I don't know about this season, though. Disney food, btw, was overpriced but delicious.

          1. re: LA Hungry

            I agree with LA Hungry. We went there today and I really would have loved to have had the kosher food there.

        2. Every time we go to DW and Hersheypark, we are so grateful for this kosher option. The food is fine, and the falafel at Hersheypark is excellent (with a lot of sides and very tasty). It is a shame that people are complaining, and I suggest before doing so, they check out the prices of the non kosher places. Or check out the prices at a kosher stand at a baseball game. So, in closing, thank you Lancaster Jewish Community for the many good meals (or decent meals) my family has had at DW and Hersheypark. And to the customers at DW and Hersheypark, just bring your own food if you don't want to eat out at a theme park.

          1 Reply
          1. I like the food, and it's better than not having any kosher food there. It's interesting how people who go out of their way to keep kosher don't go out of their way to avoid loshon hora.

            11 Replies
            1. re: BMGRAHAM

              I read this thread because I read most of what is on this board. I had never heard of Dutch Wonderland. My youngest child is 16, and when she was young most vacations were to my parents in Florida.

              So, we're supposed to take the great niece and nephew on a short vacation and this sounds interesting. I went to the Dutch Wonderland website and there is no mention of any kosher food.

     mentions a facility at DW and one at Hershey run by the same people, but no real details. Since you've been there could you fill me in.
              The nephew is 7 and eats anything. The niece is 10 and a vegetarian.


              1. re: bagelman01

                I haven't been there in a couple of years, but the options were chicken nuggets, fries, falafel, or 1/4 chicken. Look at the Kosher Lancaster website. They run the stand.

                1. re: bagelman01

                  i don't want to get into the food debate --but want to tell you that DW is for really young kids --maybe 7 and under. it's not a big amusement park --it's a collection of little kiddie rides. great and fun if your kids are really young. Hershey Park is a real amusement park -- for all ages with rides for adults, teens AND little kids. our family has loved and visited Hershey for many years...

                  1. re: elmom

                    thanks, it wouldn't work....
                    guess we'll consoder Hershey

                    1. re: bagelman01

                      Or, instead of feeding a massive corporation like Hershey (and I like Hersheypark AND DW) why not try Knoebel's in Elysburg, PA. Nearby family run park with rides for all ages, and better than average park food (though I'm not sure about kosher offerings).

                      1. re: kimfair1

                        I think the point of this thread is to find kosher food.

                        1. re: kimfair1

                          Actually, I go out of my way to support Hershey. It was one of the first major corporations to provide a vast array of kosher snacks/candy available across America.

                          I have been stranded by weather in Airports and train stations or stopped at out of the way convenience store and gas stations where the presence of Hershey candy assured me of something kosher to eat. You'd be amazed how long you can get by on a couple of Hershey bars...........

                      2. re: elmom

                        Oh, come on, it's not that bad. 10 and even 12 or 13 is still young enough to enjoy it.

                      3. re: bagelman01

                        I was there a couple of weeks ago and I noticed that where the Kosher Mart stand was, there is now a sign for Nathan's Grill.

                        1. re: BMGRAHAM

                          I just called Hershey, Dutch Wonderland's kosher site is closed, Hershey's is open.

                    2. I love the food there. The prices are comperable with other amusement park food, (expensive of course), but there is a hot kosher food option while on vacation. The kids love it, and it makes the vacation much better to go there. Anyone that doesn't keep kosher, knows that amusement park food is expensive, and this is no different. But it is there, it is good, and the only kosher option in Lancaster County.

                      30 Replies
                      1. re: itreu001

                        If you tell the people at the gate that you're going to the kosher restaurant, you can get into the park free for a short time (I'm not sure whether it's 45 minutes or an hour). A kid who eats fast enough can squeeze a ride or two into that window :-)

                        1. re: zsero

                          Of course none of us would do that as it would be a chilul Hashem.

                            1. re: zsero

                              Maybe not chilul Hashem, but certainly theft of services.

                                1. re: queenscook

                                  How so? You have a legitimate pass into the park. Nowhere does it say you <i>can't</i> use the rides.

                                  1. re: zsero

                                    It's a legitimate pass to use the kosher facilities only, since that is what you asked for; would they let someone else in for an hour without paying if they "just asked nicely?" Clearly their intent is to allow you to go eat, but nothing else. One way to be sure, I suppose, is you could ask them if they mind if your kid goes on one or two rides. If they say yes, I'm with you, but if they say no, then it's no. If you wouldn't even ask, then it's a sign you're trying to get something for nothing.

                                    1. re: queenscook

                                      It doesn't matter what their intent is, so long as they don't explicitly forbid you from using the rides how can you call it theft?

                                      1. re: zsero

                                        Would you go into a second movie in the same theater if you only paid for one? No one explicitly forbids it; it's understood that you pay for one, and don't have the legal right to go into another. Here it's understood that you're being let in just to go to the restaurant.

                                        Too many people are extremely worried about the kashrut of food, but not the kashrut, or yashrut, of actions, especially public ones.

                                        1. re: queenscook

                                          Your ticket probably does forbid it.

                                          1. re: zsero

                                            Wow. You can do what you want and attempt to justify it however you wish; I'm pretty sure if you asked a Rav if this was OK, he would say it was not, and the same goes for the DW people. Wouldn't you want to be sure that what you were doing was allowed? Or do you just want to get away with getting something for nothing?

                            2. re: zsero

                              Unfortunately that sort of behavior gives Jews a bad name. While I'm certain that Jews not bigger scoundrels than the rest of the population - I like to think they're more honest than most people - when you do something and you are visibly a Jew (either by appearance, or requesting to use the kosher facilities) it becomes a reflection on Jews in general.

                              In this case it perpetuates a perception that Jews are cheap and try to get to the rides without paying like everyone else. I agree with Queenscook - ask if it's OK for your kid to go on a couple of rides. You should follow the spirit of their rules, not just the technicalities.

                              1. re: helou

                                Just think What you are teaching your kids by sneaking in a few rides you do not pay for. People spend upwards of 10k on yeshiva tuition so their kids can be good Jews and learn Halacha yet have no qualms about cheating a company less than $100. If you sneak in to rides or even ask, they may make kosher food available only if you buy park entry thus depriving others of Dutch wonderland's food.

                                1. re: helou

                                  How can it give anyone a bad name, when there's no way for them to know who is there on a full pass and who has to leave soon?

                                  1. re: zsero

                                    I suggest that anyone interested read about the Shoppers Pass here

                                    1. re: BMGRAHAM

                                      There you go. Clearly you <i>are</i> allowed to use the rides. Also these passes don't look any different from any other ones, the people at the ride have no idea whether you intend to leave within the 45 min and get a refund, so there is no possibility of a chilul hashem.

                                      1. re: zsero

                                        So someone walks into DW for free because they are getting a kosher meal. While there, they decide to take a trip to a ride. Surely, after a while, someone will notice. What happens? DW stops being so nice allowing people into their park to enjoy the kosher stand. They make people pay full fare for a little food and rides.

                                        I don't care whether this is chillul hashem, but it certainly is unethical to go into the park for the express purpose of eating kosher food and then going on a ride. And you are going to cause problems for others in the same position down the road.

                                        1. re: craigcep

                                          First of all, how will anybody ever notice? One person is just like another. They're all there on the same pass.

                                          And DW is not being "so nice". They're not doing anyone any favours. You have 45-minutes in which you can do ANYTHING YOU LIKE, including use the rides.

                                        2. re: zsero

                                          The attorney in me now has to butt in.....

                                          The question is: is the OR in the reasons for a 45 minute pass on the website 'either/or' or is it 'and/or?'

                                          The website says the 45 minute refund of a pass is for those who don't know if their little children will be 'comfortable' with rides at an amusement park (too young, sheltered, scared-who knows) OR for those who want to enter and purchase food.
                                          If one reads it as EITHER/OR then you are not entitled to enter on a refundable pass to buy food and then cram in a ride before the 45 minute refund time limit expires.
                                          If you alternatively read it as AND/OR then one may both purchase food and expose you first time visiting child to a ride and refund within the 45 minute limit.

                                          In either case, if YOU KNOW your child is ok going on an amusement park ride (your child had done so previously, maybe at a different park) you may not let your child ride during the 45 minute refundable period, it violates the intent of DW.

                                          TO PUT IT PLAINLY: Don't ruin it for others. DW makes the opportunity available to either enter and buy food, or to expose a newbie child to rides with no chance of wasting the price of admission. This is for all comers, NOT just the kosher consumer.

                                          When I think back to how many events,, that I paid for, such as the circus, and my youngster freaked out, we left early and kissed the admission goodbye, I would ave been very thankful for a policy such as DW has.

                                          1. re: bagelman01

                                            Their reason for implementing the policy is irrelevant. All that matters is that they have the policy of refunding tickets within 45 minutes. There is nothing at all wrong with taking advantage of that policy, even if you know for certain that your kids will love the rides. They're not going to change the policy for the same reason that they adopted it in the first place. They didn't do that out of the goodness of their hearts, they did it because it makes commercial sense for them. If they were to change it they would have to reduce the rent they charge their franchisees (not limited to the kosher one), and they would lose the business of the parents who really are worried about their kids not liking it. Not to mention all the people who expect to be done in 45 minutes and end up overstaying.

                                            1. re: zsero

                                              ok. you go to an amusement park like sesame place. Admission is as follows: Children 23 months and younger are free. Children 23 months and older are $59.99. Your child is 2 years old. When you buy your ticket they assume your child is 23 months or you correct them or not?
                                              On DW's website In terms of the 45 minutes it says
                                              45 Minute Shopper’s Pass - "Purchase a ticket to Dutch Wonderland and if you don’t plan on staying for more than 45 minutes from the time of entry into the Park, we will refund your ticket. Everyone entering the Park must have a valid admission ticket. This program is only valid on tickets purchased at Dutch Wonderland on the day of your visit. You must visit Guest Services (located at the front of the Park) on the day of visit to obtain your refund. This program is meant for first time visitors who are unsure how their children will respond to an amusement park, and also for guests who want to purchase food and beverage items from inside the Park. We will not process refunds for this program over the phone or by mail. You must purchase your ticket, visit for less than 45 minutes and obtain your refund all on the same day. 45 minutes is based on when your ticket was scanned upon entry " you it looks like going for eating and a few rides is permissable. However it does say it is meant for first time visitors.

                                              1. re: koshergourmetmart

                                                It makes no difference what it's *meant* for. Anyone is entitled to use it.

                                                1. re: zsero

                                                  Do you buy a ticket and then ask them for reimbursement - or do they let you in to eat? It clearly only applies to people who buy a ticket and leave within 45 minutes.

                                                  1. re: apathetichell

                                                    You buy a ticket, take note of the time when you entered, and make sure to leave and get a refund within 45 min.

                                                    1. re: zsero

                                                      I think the way how you initially described your entry process, there may have been some confusion - at least I was confused. You wrote "If you tell the people at the gate that you're going to the kosher restaurant, you can get into the park free for a short time."

                                                      You're not getting into the park for free- you are being refunded the price of entry if you exit the park within 45 minutes.

                                                      1. re: apathetichell

                                                        Yes, I had forgotten the details. The effect is the same.

                                                        1. re: zsero

                                                          No. The way it sounded was you tell them you want to get kosher food, they let you in and you go on rides even though you told them you were there for food. In actuality you pay to get in and do whatever you want as long as you are done by 45 minutes and they refund your ticket

                                                          1. re: zsero

                                                            It's intended for people who want to make sure that their young kids enjoy it. I can't imagine that you would shlap all the way from wherever you live on a regular basis just to let your kids ride free for 45 minutes. In any case at the moment there is no kosher food there this year. Rather than continuing this discussion how about we all write to Dutch Wonderland and tell them how much we appreciated the kosher food and ask them to reconsider?