Popsicle is a popular brand of ice pop in the United States and Canada and became a genericized trademark for any type of ice pop due to its popularity. The first ice pop was created by accident in 1905 when 11-year-old Frank Epperson left a glass of homemade soda on his porch on a very cold San Francisco night. The next morning he went to go get the soda and it was frozen. Using the stirring stick that he had also left in the glass, he pulled it out and tried it. "Popsicle" is a trademark held by Unilever.
In 1905 in San Francisco, 11-year-old Frank Epperson was mixing a white powdered flavoring for soda and water out on the porch. He left it there, with a stirring stick still in it. That night, temperatures reached a record low, and the next morning, the boy discovered the drink had frozen to the stick, inspiring the idea of a fruit-flavored 'Popsicle', a portmanteau of soda pop and icicle. In 1922, he introduced the frozen treat at a fireman's ball. It was a sensation. In 1923, Epperson sold the frozen pop on a stick to the public at Neptune Beach, an amusement park in Alameda, CA. Seeing that it was a success, in 1924 Epperson applied for a patent for his "frozen confectionery" which he called "the Epsicle ice pop". He renamed it to Popsicle, allegedly at the insistence of his children.
It was originally available in seven flavors and marketed as a "frozen drink on a stick." The form is unique, with a wooden stick going through the ice to create a handle. The stick, similar in shape and size to an emery board, with round ends used as a handle became as well known as the treat, commonly used for craft projects by children and adults.
In 1925, Epperson sold the rights to the Popsicle to the Joe Lowe Company of New York. "I was flat and had to liquidate all my assets," he recalled years later. "I haven't been the same since." In 1989, Good Humor, a subsidiary of Unilever, bought the rights. In June 2006, Popsicles with "natural flavors and colors" were introduced, replacing the original versions in some cases. In addition, Popsicle provides several sugar-free flavors.
In April 1939, Popsicle Pete was introduced on the radio program Buck Rogers in the 25th Century as having won the "Typical American Boy Contest." The character told listeners that they could win presents by sending wrappers from Popsicle products to the manufacturer. During the 1940s, Popsicle Pete ads were created by Woody Gelman and his partner Ben Solomon. The ads appeared in print, television commercials and activity books until 1995.
Creamsicle is a brand name for a different frozen dessert also owned by Unilever. Again on the same flat wooden stick, it is made as a single flat bar with a rounded end. The center is vanilla ice cream, covered by a layer of flavored ice. Creamsicle flavors include orange, blue raspberry, lime, grape and cherry. They are available in several varieties, including 100 Calorie Bars, Low Fat Bars, No Sugar Added Bars, and Sugar Free Bars. 50-50 bar is an alternative name for a Creamsicle. In the United States, August 14 has been named as National Creamsicle Day. Similar is the Dreamsicle, whose center is ice milk.
Fudgsicle is another registered trademark of Unilever. In the early 20th century, the product was sold as Fudgicle. This frozen dessert is in a flat shape on a stick, but it is chocolate-flavored with a texture somewhat similar to ice cream. Fudgsicles are available in 100 Calorie Bars, Low Fat Bars, No Sugar Added Bars, and Sugar Free Bars. The box can be all milk chocolate or a mixed box with white chocolate, milk chocolate and dark chocolate.
Slow Melt Pops are newer to the Popsicle product line. The addition of a small amount of gelatin helps them stay frozen longer than traditional ice pops. Slow Melt Pops are available in several varieties, including Slow Melt Mighty Minis, Fantastic Fruity, Swirlwinds, Slow Melt Dora the Explorer, and movie-themed Ice Age.
Yosicles are new to the Popsicle line. The Yosicle is a Popsicle containing yogurt.
- "Frank Epperson, 89, Inventor of Popsicle, Dies in California". New York Times. October 27, 1983.
- Jordi, Nathalie. "Don't Use the P Word: A Popsicle Showdown". the Atlantic. Retrieved 9 September 2011.
- Buck Rogers radio program; Episode #1, Apr 5 1939, Generic Radio Workshop Script Library, Accessed November 1, 2010.
- Buck Rogers radio files, Internet Archive, Accessed November 1, 2010.
- "The Couponess". "National Creamsicle Day 2011: Creamsicle Dessert & Drink Recipes". thecouponess.com. Retrieved 9 September 2011.
- "Zany Holidays: National Creamsicles Day 2008". Retrieved 2008-08-14.
- "Holiday Insights : August 14 - National Creamsicle Day". Retrieved 2008-08-14.
- Scoop.com, December 2004%2012:01:00%20PM Industry News, 18 December 2004.
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