Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Huyler's Chocolate at the Mingei

I only discovered this art museum in Balboa Park a couple of months ago.  I had walked by it many times on free Tuesdays thinking it wasn't a free museum.  Well, my loss...  Every visit has been a pleasant surprise.

Today I went in and ran across this odd exhibit called "A Golden Age of Marketing Design" about Huyler's Chocolate.  ...never heard of it.  It turns out Huylers was in business for fifty years and for much of that time it was the biggest chocolate company in the country.  The company and it's products have now  completely disappeared.  The Huyler family sold the business in 1925 and it went bankrupt during the depression a few short years later.   I was born in 1952 and have never heard of this company before today.  Can you imagine Microsoft going out of business and within 20 years nobody has ever heard of it before.

Huyler's was the first candy company in the U.S. to use large-scale advertising to market its products-- as a result it became the major candy company in the U.S. during its fifty years.  By 1915 Huyler's was producing over 1600 varieties of candies.

During this period in our history few women worked outside the home, and those that did were often grossly underpaid and slaved in conditions that were pitifully unhealthy.  Huyler's factories were models of egalitarian reform which was very rare in that time.  Most of Hulyer's 2000 employees were women and given managable workloads, paid holidays, medical aid and disability compensation.

By the time the business was sold by the family in 1925 fourteen factories produced the chocolates that were sold in fifty-one Huyler's Stores and soda fountains throughout the East Coast while its products were sold in over 5000 small businesses nationwide.  Despite the rapid expansion Huyler's chocolates were never mass-produced.  The business relied on maintaining its reputation for supplying the best chocolate in America.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Tucson Fun

I spent the last week of April visiting my friends Phil and Jody from Seattle who were spending the month in Tucson.  We spent the week hiking or biking every day. 

I arrived in Tucson on Tuesday afternoon then on Wednesday we hiked Ventana Canyon literally out the door and across the parking lot from where they were staying.  The high temps require an early start so we were out the door before 8am and back shortly after noon.

Phil and Jody on the Ventana Canyon trail.

On Thursday we went for a hike at Mt Lemon in the Catalina Mountains on the north side of Tucson.  There were great views of Tucson in the distance.

On Friday we biked up nearby Sabino Canyon.  We were out the door at 7am in order to bike up the canyon road before the park service passenger trams start running at 9am.  The Saguaro were blooming like crazy as you can see here.

On Saturday I visited friends Dave and Loree in Green Valley fifteen miles south of Tucson who I know from when I lived in Alaska in the early '80's.  What was I thinking-- I didn't take any pictures!

On Sunday I went for a hike with Phil and Jody in Bear Canyon which involves going to the Sabino Canyon trail head and taking another short tram to the nearby Bear Canyon trail head.

On Monday we took a hike in Pima Canyon also in the lower Catalina Mountains on the north side of Tucson.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Zion and Snow Canyon

I left Tucson on Tuesday, April 29 to head for Hurricane, UT.  After arriving in Flagstaff Tuesday afternoon I hung out at the movie theater and saw Heaven Is Real and Draft Day.  Neither was a very good movie.  On Wednesday I met up with my friend Wayne in Hurricane for a few days of hiking in nearby Zion National Park and Snow Canyon State Park north of St George.

There was some great scenery on the drive from Tucson to Hurricane on Wednesday.  This view was on Highway 89A west of Page, AZ.

 On Thursday we took the bus from the main Zion Visitor center up to the end of the road at the Narrows trailhead-- shown here.  The water was way too bitter cold to consider hiking in it without waders.
The squirrels were incredibly tame and very persistent about demanding treats.