Jolly Ranchers - A candy with a Jolly History
by Laurnie Wilson
A Jolly Confection
Is there anything more joyful than a Jolly Rancher? Something about the sweet, sugary taste, paired with the friendly-sounding name makes this one treat that’s been able to delight the young and the young at heart since 1949.
My earliest memoires of the Jolly Rancher stretch back to my elementary school days, when my music teacher would pass them out as a reward after class if everyone behaved well. The prospect of a delicious candy was certainly inspiration to listen up in class. And I have a feeling that I wasn’t the only one who benefitted from a little sugary inspiration.
A Jolly Past
When Bill Harmsen first founded the Jolly Rancher Company, he aimed to make the name sound like an appealing and friendly Western company. This was fitting, seeing as he originally only sold his goods in the Denver, Colorado area. What lucky kids they must have been, to be the first to ever taste the jolliest candy around!
And delicious candies weren’t the only things they could buy from Mr. Harmsen. The Jolly Rancher Company in fact sold ice cream and chocolate as well. But clearly, nothing could compete with the Jolly Rancher candy. This was especially true in the winter months, when ice cream wasn’t selling in those cold Colorado temperatures. That’s when Harmsen shifted his focus to hard candy, something people wanted all year round!
Back then, Jolly Ranchers came in three flavors: grape, apple, and Fire Stix. Later on, cherry, lemon, and pineapple were added. And much later, blue raspberry was thrown into the mix as well.
These days, Jolly Ranchers come in cherry, blue raspberry, grape, apple, and watermelon. There are also Jolly Ranchers for Valentine’s Day, Easter, Halloween, and Christmas. So you can bring some extra jolly to every holiday!
And for the more adventurous, you can even make your own Jolly Rancher candies at home! But with the great selection we have here, why put in all that time when you can be just a click away from the candy you crave? It’s up to you.
We offer a word of caution to how you carry your Jolly Ranchers around. A couple of guys were arrested in New York City for what the cops thought was crystal meth, but in fact was just some Jolly Rancher candy. Whatever you choose to do, you can take heart knowing that the candy you love has been beloved by decades of sweet tooths before you.