Jelly Belly co-founder’s ‘gold ticket’ treasure hunt sounds very familiar

One of the co-inventors the Jelly Belly’s famous jelly beans says he was inspired by “Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory” when he came up with his sweepstakes treasure hunt, in which the prize is a candy factory and a candy-making class.

David Klein, who left the Jelly Belly Candy Company shortly after its formation in 1976, announced to candy lovers that he will co-sign a candy factory to whoever wins his treasure hunt, aptly titled The Gold Ticket.

Participants must pay $49.98 to enter the contest and only 1,000 tickets are being sold in every state. After finding a ticket, each player will receive a riddle which, once they solve, will lead them to a “gold-colored dog tag.” Whoever finds the dog tag will win $5,000 and reach the next level of the competition for the candy factory.

If it seems confusing, that’s because it is. In the Facebook group for the competition, which hosts 50,000 hopeful participants, people seem divided on whether this is a scam — although Klein insists it’s not.

Credit: Facebook

For one thing, nobody appears to know where this candy factory is or what it looks like.

Klein’s candy company, Candyman Kitchens, is registered in northern Florida. Klein mentioned on Facebook that the contest’s factory is also located in Florida, clarifying that it’s not the Jelly Belly factory.

Details remain unclear in terms of when players will receive their riddles and where the golden dog tags will be. Those issues which concerned a lot of people in the Facebook group, particularly those commenting from Alaska. For those in bigger states, one woman in the group suggested, “Well hook up with people around your state to cover more ground.”

Participants in the Facebook group also seemed mad at the portrayal of the competition, both from within the group and in the media.

“Most of the articles I’ve read covering the contest can’t even get the cost of entry correct — they use $49.99 instead of $49.98,” one person wrote. “It’s sad to see a lot of the behavior shown in this FB group.”

Others appeared to be spreading rumors.

“There was a person who posted in the group earlier today that they threw away a dog tag in GA. They said the only thing the dog tag had on it was gold ticket,” a Facebook user commented.

“Interesting,” someone replied. “The first contest begins in Georgia Sept. 30. Contests in other states continue through October and beyond.”

Hopefully, things will become clearer closer to the start date, but for now let’s just hope no spoiled kids bought their tickets, because we all know how that ends.

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