Author Topic: Newspaper Article from 1974  (Read 3103 times)

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Offline Bigmuc13

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Newspaper Article from 1974
« on: May 24, 2017, 08:45:47 AM »
Hopefully I attached this correctly.  Someone sent this to me a while back and I am just now getting around to posting it.  It is a Kansas City Star article about the Wacky Packages craze at is height.  All the stickers in the Photos are Series 6.  So we know for a fact that series 6 was released sometime before (probably fairly close to) April 25, 1974.  Pretty good read.  I was 9 on that date.

Still looking for Series 17

Offline freetoes

  • Posts: 102
Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2017, 09:16:13 AM »
I completed Series 6 on March 25, 1974 (my dad's birthday).  Baby Runt was the last sticker I needed.

In SC, I think we got ours a little late.  My personal Wacky timeline ran like this:

Jan. 14 or 21--Bought my first packs (Series 4).
Feb. 18--First Series 5's.
Mar. 2 (?) --First Series 6's.  After finishing the set, I did some trading for earlier cards.
Fall 1974-- Series 9.
May 26, 1975--Bought two Series 11 packs.  One of the stickers was The Saturday Evening Ghost, with the May 31, 1975 date.
July 13-26--Series 13.  Completed except for Umbrella and Icicle.

The Majik Market charged us ten cents instead of a nickel.  But I remember most of their packs had three cards instead of two. 

Offline bigtomi

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Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2017, 02:48:33 PM »
The girl on the far left looks like she's checking for dinged corners.

Offline MoldRush

  • Posts: 292
Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2017, 06:15:58 PM »
Looks very interesting, but unfortunately the small text is just a little too out of focus to read.  If you could maybe shoot a pic from a little further away and then crop the image, it may come out a little sharper.  Or, if I could mail you an SASE for a Xerox copy that would be awesome.  I've been a bit nostalgic about vintage Wackys lately, and this would scratch that itch!

Offline MoldRush

  • Posts: 292
Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #4 on: May 24, 2017, 06:31:13 PM »
I completed Series 6 on March 25, 1974 (my dad's birthday).  Baby Runt was the last sticker I needed.

In SC, I think we got ours a little late.  My personal Wacky timeline ran like this:

Jan. 14 or 21--Bought my first packs (Series 4).
Feb. 18--First Series 5's.
Mar. 2 (?) --First Series 6's.  After finishing the set, I did some trading for earlier cards.
Fall 1974-- Series 9.
May 26, 1975--Bought two Series 11 packs.  One of the stickers was The Saturday Evening Ghost, with the May 31, 1975 date.
July 13-26--Series 13.  Completed except for Umbrella and Icicle.

The Majik Market charged us ten cents instead of a nickel.  But I remember most of their packs had three cards instead of two.
That is pretty impressive recall.  Did you write down info at the time, or are you associating distinct memories with other life events that makes it possible to recall specific dates or approximate ones some 40+ years later?  Or maybe  it's as simple as writing dates on the backs of stickers (God forbid) at the time, and you still have them.

Your dates also suggest that there were regional differences in when various series appeared.  For example, I remember buying Series 13 from ice cream trucks as early as maybe May '75.  I guess it's also possible that these later series hung around longer, as the craze was slowing by that time.  March-April '74 sounds right for Series 6.

Offline freetoes

  • Posts: 102
Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #5 on: May 24, 2017, 08:02:27 PM »
That is pretty impressive recall.  Did you write down info at the time, or are you associating distinct memories with other life events that makes it possible to recall specific dates or approximate ones some 40+ years later?  Or maybe  it's as simple as writing dates on the backs of stickers (God forbid) at the time, and you still have them.

Your dates also suggest that there were regional differences in when various series appeared.  For example, I remember buying Series 13 from ice cream trucks as early as maybe May '75.  I guess it's also possible that these later series hung around longer, as the craze was slowing by that time.  March-April '74 sounds right for Series 6.

My first purchase date can be approximated from journal entries (it was definitely a Monday, before the 27th).  The first Series 5 packs were right after a Webelos outing on Washington's Birthday, and the Series 11 packs were purchased on Memorial Day.  Series 13 was sandwiched around summer camp.

The consensus seems to be that the Northeast got their Wackys first.  Series 13 was definitely around before July.

Offline MoldRush

  • Posts: 292
Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #6 on: May 24, 2017, 08:09:49 PM »
My first purchase date can be approximated from journal entries (it was definitely a Monday, before the 27th).  The first Series 5 packs were right after a Webelos outing on Washington's Birthday, and the Series 11 packs were purchased on Memorial Day.  Series 13 was sandwiched around summer camp.

The consensus seems to be that the Northeast got their Wackys first.  Series 13 was definitely around before July.
That's awesome.  I only have a few distinct memories, nowhere near enough to try and speculate a timeline.  Missed entire series completely.  Not a sniff of series 10, 11 or 12, 14.  What made me forget about them and then come back for 13, then 15?  Is it possible that some series never made it to the store counters and ice cream trucks in certain locations?  I'll never know for sure.

Offline starchild75

  • Posts: 14
Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #7 on: May 25, 2017, 10:29:17 AM »
Wow great memories.  I grew up on the west coast and was 10 when the OS cards hit.  Series 1 had come on gone though I managed to get and keep a couple of the commons, and one of the keepers (Crust) had the black Ludlow back.  I bought Series 2 and completed those except for Run Tony.  On the playground we somehow knew that RT was scarce although did not know the circumstances.  Then one day one of my classmates brings one to class and sells it to another classmate for the princely sum of 50 cents (this being when a complete school lunch with milk cost 40 cents).  I totally missed Series 3 and 4 because I was buying baseball and football cards but by Series 5 I ditched sports for Wackys.  Got a good dose of Series 5-8 and a few 9, then missed most of 10-13 and picked up a few 14-15 before leaving it.  I never saw or had anything from Series 16 and by that time my family had moved to the east coast.  A few years later I bought the 1979 rerun cards but only managed to get a handful of Series 1 and few from Series 2.  Spent the last few years putting a binder together of OS cards (except for Series 16) and 79-80 cards most of which is now complete.  A fun process that brought back many memories.

Offline Tom Keen

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Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #8 on: May 25, 2017, 04:10:07 PM »
I had pied piper, good humor and mr Softy as the ice cream guys and never saw wackys for sale from them.  Was this common to find wackys in ice cream trucks?

Offline Baked Bears

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Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #9 on: May 25, 2017, 05:03:09 PM »
I had pied piper, good humor and mr Softy as the ice cream guys and never saw wackys for sale from them.  Was this common to find wackys in ice cream trucks?

Perhaps the Mister Softee driver was selling them to kids on the side?  You know, long, gray trench coat lined with Boozo, El Polluto, Playbug, Kook, Goon's Farm, Gillo Port, Camals, Cult 45, Brandy Land, Bloodweiser - everything a growing child needs!

Incidentally, for a two or three year period, there was an older woman who lived two blocks away from the elementary school.  (At that time, we walked home for lunch, then walked back to school again for the afternoon classes.)  Anyway, during lunch break she would open up her kitchen and the children would file in through one door, purchase candy from boxes lined on her table and counters - Swedish Fish, Tootsie Rolls, and yes, even Wackys - and then file back outside through a second door, our hands, pockets, and mouths loaded with candy.  Fond memories, indeed!  Those were the days of riding in the beds of pickup trucks, zig-zagging your bike through fog clouds spewed out behind the mosquito truck, and kicking flaming smudge pots along the street at night!  Yes, very good times indeed!



Oh, and I almost forgot:  Talking to clowns leering out from behind sewer grates!



Shame it all had to end!
« Last Edit: May 25, 2017, 05:30:11 PM by Baked Bears »

Offline MoldRush

  • Posts: 292
Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #10 on: May 25, 2017, 05:44:58 PM »
I had pied piper, good humor and mr Softy as the ice cream guys and never saw wackys for sale from them.  Was this common to find wackys in ice cream trucks?
Excellent question.  I don't think this has ever come up before, at least not that I've seen, so I never thought to make mention of it.

What I would call the franchise-type trucks, basically Good Humor and Mister Softee, NEVER had Wackys or, for that matter, much of anything other than ice cream and related products.  Our Good Humor guy offered frozen pieces of bubble gum, but that was about it.  It was the less prominent trucks, I recall one being Hood ice cream, a Hershey's I think, and maybe one or two independents which had no specific brand affiliation, that consistently carried Wackys, baseball cards, and a bunch of popular candy/gum items as well.  These were very boxy trucks which usually had a round hole in the side over a garbage can so the kiddies could discard their wrappers.  Think of the thousands upon thousands of good Wacky wrappers that are lost to the landfills!  Needless to say, the downside of relying on ice cream trucks was that they could only be counted on during summer months.  That might be why I had some access to the 13th but not the 14th.  I know I had enough mobility by then to get to stores, but for some reason I was not doing so as consistently as dealing with the trucks.  Now when I describe the trucks as consistently carrying Wackys, I only mean they consistently tried to.  They were out of stock fairly often too, or would impose a limit on packs per purchase.  I don't think I ever managed to make a single windfall purchase of say 10 packs or more, and I gotta believe it can't be because I never had more than 10 or 20 cents on me.  It had to be that retailers were rationing packs.

Offline RawGoo

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Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #11 on: May 25, 2017, 08:25:31 PM »
I had pied piper, good humor and mr Softy as the ice cream guys and never saw wackys for sale from them.  Was this common to find wackys in ice cream trucks?

I don't recall seeing Wackys on ice cream trucks when we were in Pittsburgh, but I definitely bought a lot of them from the ice cream truck after we moved to Los Angeles.  I remember once buying a full box.  Sadly, it went out in the trash, full of wrappers and gum.  At least I still have the stickers!

Offline Soremel

  • Posts: 472
Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #12 on: May 25, 2017, 09:56:05 PM »
I lived out in the boonies, off the profitable routes of the ice cream trucks. We did, however, have access to a "Candy Man". During the summer of '73 (late August), I was hanging out at one of my neighborhood friend's house for the day. He was telling me about an old guy that drove through the neighborhood every Wednesday selling bread, baked goods and candy out of the back of his blue van. He told me about the Candy Man because he said he sold these cool stickers from his truck, but he couldn't remember what they were called. He tried to find some that he had recently bought to show me what they looked like, but his mother had misplaced them.

It just so happened to be on a Wednesday that we were having this discussion, and the Candy Man rolled into my friend's driveway and honked his horn. I was introduced to the man in the blue van and was in awe of the variety of candy that he had neatly displayed in wide, wooden pull-out drawers that were custom-made for the back of his vehicle. After the formal introduction, my friend instantly spotted some packs of the stickers that he was trying to describe to me earlier... they were bright red packs of Wacky Packages stickers! Once we each bought a handful of packs, I knew exactly what these were.

A girl in my 6th grade homeroom had a bunch of these stickers a few months prior (late April) and I distinctly remember another one of my classmates trying to assemble the Gadzooka puzzle from the checklists mixed in with the pile of stickers that the girl brought to school. After we opened all of our packs from the Candy Man, we noticed that we weren't finding any of the Gadzooka puzzle pieces, or any of the titles that I saw in homeroom in the spring. It was then that we noticed that the checklists indicated that these were the 2nd series of Wacky Packages!

A few weeks after my introduction to the "Candy Man", summer vacation had ended, and we were being carted off back to school. During the first week of school, my neighborhood friend was the center of attention on the bus during the ride to school. His mother had just bought him a full box of the 3rd series of Wacky Packages and he was opening all 48 packs on the way to school!

My friend stopped collecting Wacky Packages somewhere between the 7th and 10th series. I distinctly remember the last Wacky purchase that I made from the Candy Man before he retired... it was a pristine, unopened box of the 13th series during the summer of '75 (mid-July). I continued to collect Wackies up to the 15th series and was not aware of the 16th series until 1984.

A funny side note to this story: the day that I met the Candy Man, my mother asked me where I bought the candy and stickers. She had a fit when I told her that I got them from a man selling candy out of his van! It turns out that the "Candy Man' was Mr. Martin... a member of the choir at the church that my family went to at the time! He had taken on this job after he retired to stay active and earn some extra money.

Sorry for the long read! I could talk about the old days forever!
« Last Edit: May 30, 2017, 07:13:00 PM by Soremel »

Offline MoldRush

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Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #13 on: May 26, 2017, 02:04:26 AM »
On the contrary, these stories and recollections are just as interesting as the hobby itself.  A collection of the best stories compiled in a book is probably the last great Wacky book waiting to be published.  Don't know if everyone feels this way, but even just talking about the ice cream trucks got my nostalgic juices flowing.

Offline bandaches

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Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #14 on: May 26, 2017, 06:07:36 PM »
On the contrary, these stories and recollections are just as interesting as the hobby itself.  A collection of the best stories compiled in a book is probably the last great Wacky book waiting to be published.  Don't know if everyone feels this way, but even just talking about the ice cream trucks got my nostalgic juices flowing.
Totally agree I love that stuff.  Believe it or not I only bought wackied from one place it was a corner store in my town one of the cross streets was Ludlow Road.  Never got any ludlow's there though.  I did get 1 pack of series 1 tan backs
Contact me at bandaches@yahoo.com as I have tons of wackys for sale!

Offline Jean Nutty

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Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #15 on: May 30, 2017, 01:15:03 PM »
Looks very interesting, but unfortunately the small text is just a little too out of focus to read.  If you could maybe shoot a pic from a little further away and then crop the image, it may come out a little sharper. 

If you click on the image, and then click on it a second time, you can view it close up.

(If you then right click on it and select "copy image" you can paste it into MS Paint or another program)
 

« Last Edit: May 30, 2017, 01:17:49 PM by Jean Nutty »

Offline MoldRush

  • Posts: 292
Re: Newspaper Article from 1974
« Reply #16 on: May 30, 2017, 07:08:05 PM »
Thanks for that, didnt realize you could enlarge it twice.

Good read.  Kind of brings you right back to the height of the craze.