Archive for April, 2011

26 Apr

Party Trend: Mom Proms 0

Right after watching this clip from ABC News about the Wisconsin teen (right) who made her prom dress and accessories (including shoes!) from Starburst wrappers, I saw ABC’s segment on a hot new party trend, Mom Proms. Hilarious!

In a nutshell, moms dig out their old prom dresses and hold a girls’ night out in their dated gowns, corsages, and big hair. The founding “Mom Prom” moms in Michigan turned their annual Mom Prom into a charity event.

The whole time I watched the Mom Prom segment, I thought how perfect a retro candy buffet would be at an event like this.

Just as the Starburst-clad Wisconsin teen’s prom theme is Candy Land, so can a Mom Prom’s! Here are some ideas I found to carry out such an event, 1980s style … and much to the horror of your children:

Have you ever attended or organized a Mom Prom? If so, e-mail me at Sue@Candy.com. I want to hear all about it!

Photo credit Starburst dress: Gina Morrow

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8 Apr

Name That Candy Brand Contest 0

4/11/11  Contest UpdateThe winner of the “Name That Candy Brand” contest is Elizabeth Weiss! Elizabeth will receive a $25 Gift Certificate to Candy.com, which will get her a nice supply of Snickers, Baby Ruth, Junior Mints, Dots, or Hershey bars. (The “c” in Snickers was the one letter that threw off a few players. If I run this type of contest again, I’m going for super obscure candy brands. Be prepared for a turbo challenge!)

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I love Fridays. I love Fridays that involve a wacky candy contest even more. The wacky contest I have up my sleeve today involves some Candy.com surfing.

Take a look at the word “Candy” below. (Excuse my lackluster Photoshop job.)


Each letter is taken from a different candy brand’s logo. For instance, the “C” could be from Charleston Chew (hint: it’s not).

Match each letter with its correct candy brand and you’ll automatically be entered to win a $25 Candy.com gift certificate to jump-start your Easter candy shopping.

I’ll announce the winner on Monday after you’ve had a chance to browse candy logos and packaging on Candy.com over the weekend.  We just added lots of new spring candies, including the World’s Largest Gummy Bunny and gorgeous lollipops, so feel free to shop, too!

Please enter your guesses in a list and submit your list after this post or on Candy.com’s Facebook fan page or Twitter. For example:

C = Charleston Chew (again, NOT!)
a = Mike and Ike (not!)
n = Good & Plenty (not!)
d = Red Vines (not!)
y = Milky Way (not, although that would have made for a good “y”)

All five letters come from pretty popular candies, so hopefully this exercise won’t be too taxing for a Friday. Have a great weekend and thanks for playing!

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in Candy, Contests

If you watched National Lampoon’s Animal House with a keen eye, you may recall the film’s Dean Wormer reading a list of pranks committed by members of the Delta House fraternity. One of those pranks was dumping a truckload of Fizzies® into a swimming pool during a swim meet. (That is pretty clever.)

I vaguely recall getting a packet of Fizzies in my grammar school days and tapping a candy tablet on my tongue before dropping it into a glass of water to get the little fizzle blast. My kids have never tried this trick—or Fizzies—so I’m feeling a bit neglectful.

Luckily, the Fizzies brand is still going strong in 2011. In fact, it’s back with all new packaging that includes the original Fizzies logo from 1957, and a starring role in one of Food Network’s “Unwrapped” episodes (see video below). As a nudge to try (or re-try) Fizzies, all flavors are 10% off at Candy.com during the month of April.

Chris Briggs, the national accounts manager at Amerilab Technologies, Inc., the manufacturer of Fizzies, gave me some inside scoop on the company’s only confectionery brand. (Amerilab is a leading effervescent contract manufacturer.)

Chris says Root Beer is the top-selling Fizzies flavor and it’s also one of the original flavors. The flavor lineup today includes Root Beer, Cherry, Orange, Lemonade, and Blue Razz. All five varieties are sugar-free, enriched with Vitamin C, and come 12 tablets to a pack.

In the mid-1970s, while I was busy watching “Bewitched” and “ZOOM,” Fizzies was owned by the Warner-Lambert Pharmaceutical Company, and was sold unsweetened with the instructions calling for the addition of “one tablespoon of sugar and ice.”

Nowadays, Fizzies is sweetened with sucralose (a.k.a. Splenda), and each tablet creates a 5-calorie drink. Chris suggests plopping Fizzies into carbonated beverages like Coke and 7UP to create your own version of Cherry Coke, Mountain Dew, or Orange Crush. Even better, he says, adult consumers can pop a Lemonade Fizzies into club soda on the rocks with a splash of Vodka, and finish it off with a twist of lime. Hello summer!

Chris also lobs out the idea of crushing Fizzies tablets and sprinkling the powder on ice cream or cupcakes. “If done correctly, you can get a bit of a zing. An unexpected flavor,” he explains. “The challenge is that moisture instantly begins the effervescing process.”

So, the trick for using Fizzies as a topping is to sprinkle it on fast and serve even faster. What kid wouldn’t love a good fizz with ice cream, cake … or Cheerios?

New Fizzies Tablets for Hot Beverages
This summer, the Fizzies brand will be expanding with two new hot products: Fizzies Hot Apple Cider and Hot Cocoa. Both will be debuting at the Sweets & Snacks Expo in Chicago.

Hot Apple Cider and Hot Cocoa are seasonal and limited editions to the Fizzies brand. These effervescent tablets (8 tablets to a pack) are designed to dissolve quickly in warmed milk (Hot Cocoa) and hot water (Hot Apple Cider). “The warmer the liquid, the faster the effervescent tablets dissolve,” says Chris.

To avoid messy powder packets in my own home, I’ll be giving these a whirl.

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Chicago was hopping yesterday. The Cubs, Blackhawks, and Just Born’s Peepster mobile were all in town.


Terese McDonald, the lovely and fun owner of Candyality, gave me a heads up that the Peepster and the Cub’s star pitcher, Ryan Dempster, would both be at her Wrigleyville candy shop. (Click here to track the Peepster’s next stops.)

Candyality shop owner Terese McDonald with her husband, Matt.

What a great day! As if on cue, the Peepster, with its big yellow Peep perched on its roof, pulled up to Candyality right after we parked the Gillerlain Mobile. The Peeps crew immediately started handing out Just Born’s new Peepster chocolates (thumbs up) and hats to a happy crowd.

My not-so-shy son walked up to “Peeps” the mascot, and asked the yellow fellow what he ate for dinner. I was curious to hear the response, but Peeps’ handler kindly told my son that Peeps didn’t make a peep. (If Peeps could talk, I bet he would have said blue Peeps.)

Shortly after, Ryan Dempster arrived in a cab straight from his game against the Pirates and signed mini bins filled with red, white, and blue “Cubbie Gummi Bears.” Sales of the candies benefited the Ryan and Jenny Dempster Family Foundation, which is dedicated to raising awareness and supporting families affected by 22q11.2—a chromosomal disorder that Ryan and his wife Jenny’s daughter Riley was born with. (Riley came to the shop, too, and is adorable.)

After we got a chance to meet Ryan (really nice guy), my not-so-shy son was back at it with the questions. He asked the Cubbie which team gives him the biggest pitching challenge. Without any hesitation, Ryan replied, “the Atlanta Braves.”

That's me on the left with my daughter, son, husband, and the Cubbies' Ryan Dempster in the middle.

With that, we wondered up the street to grab pizza at D’Agostino’s, the local restaurant that just landed the pizza contract at Wrigley Field (love that!), and popped back into the Gillerlain Mobile to head home.

Great day! Thank you Terese, Ryan, and Peeps road crew.

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in Candy, Just Born, Inc., Marshmallow, News, Peeps