We recall a childhood of hoarding the chocolate pops this time each year, but nary a recollection of free candy for discovering a specially designed wrapper. Rumor has it that ones sporting an Indian shooting at a star were coveted and rewarded.
We're feeling kinda gypped.
Urban legend and snopes sites recount the random practice of store owners who traded marked Tootsie Pop wrappers with a brand new sucker; but who's the real sucker? Not the candy manufacturer, that's for sure.
There's no rhyme or reason why discrepancies (other than color and flavor name) should even exist between lollipop wrappers. A supposed one-third of all wrappers feature this costumed boy. Tootsie Roll Industries claims to have never promoted the practice of handing out free pops in exchange for said covers, though as a response to ongoing piles of mail over the years, they've created their own spin on it. The name: Legend of the Indian Wrapper.
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The Cliffs Notes version is that a candymaker wanted to create a lollipop with a chewy center. Instead of a devil, he cut a deal with a chief to make his dream a reality. Those spherical suckers bearing the image were chief's quality control seal to show he was checking. This bedtime story ends with the following.
Well, how Tootsie Pops get their chewy candy center is still a secret. Some say it's magic, but however it is done, you can be sure of one thing, the grand Indian chief "Shooting Star" will always make sure that the man continues to make Tootsie Roll Pops with their chewy candy centers.
So have you been fortunate enough to unearth these wrappers, and if so, have you been able to redeem them? Better yet, call out storefronts that still do this. We're all ears.