The Central Mall of the Wisconsin State Fair was an explosion of color. White tents stood tall and proud, the red and yellow Jelly Belly logo clear and bold. An over-sized RV, covered in hundreds of brightly colored jelly bellies, was at the center of the commotion. Jelly Belly lovers created a human maze, as they lined up in front of the RV, hands outstretched, waiting to sample the gourmet beans.
Smiles were everywhere. Kids held on to their stash of jelly beans, like a pirate protecting buried treasure. Even parents got in on the Jelly Belly fun, posing in front of a giant Mr. Jelly Belly. I was surprised by how many people loved jelly beans – especially the Jelly Belly variety. Walking through the crowds, gobbling up my own samples, I listened as families analyzed each bean. It was quite clear that the fruity ones are by far the favorite. But a few preferred the more savory flavors like popcorn and peanut butter. A few children asked their parents if these were Bertie Botts Every Flavor Bean – a candy that’s popular with Harry Potter. For a moment I wondered what a boggie flavored jelly bean really would taste like.
All around the square, Jelly Belly experts created “recipes” with their signature candy. By combining a few simple beans, you could indulge in a cherry turnover, rainbow sherbet, or the famous Wisconsin cream puff. Families looking for some hands-on fun headed to the Jelly Belly Workshop, where famed cupcake decorator, Karen Tack, author of Hello, Cupcake and What’s New Cupcake, demonstrated some fun, colorful ways to use Jelly Bellies.
But Jelly Belly beans aren’t just for eating. A few local artists got creative with their beans and recreated famous paintings like the Mona Lisa and Starry Night – all with Jelly Belly beans.
It was a day of colorful, flavorful, creative fun. When it comes to Jelly Belly jelly beans, go ahead, play with your food.
What are some of your favorite Jelly Belly flavors? Do you like to use Jelly Belly jelly beans in fun, creative ways?
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