The perfect snack on a hot summer day has to be a sno cone. Cool, crunchy ice mixed with flavorful syrups has kept kids (and adults) refreshed for decades. Of course, we can thank Snoopy for that.
Since its arrival nearly 40 years ago, the Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine has become an iconic piece of American culture. In fact, it’s popularity rose so far that Time magazine named it as one of the 100 best toys in history. Take that, GI Joes.
So how did this Snoopy-inspired dessert delight become a cultural phenomenon?
While Hasbro began producing the machine in 1979, its origins trace back much earlier. Sam Speers came up with the first iteration of the sno-cone machine back in the early ’60s. He first developed the Frosty Sno-Man Sno-Cone Machine.
In fitting fashion, Frosty delivered chunks of ice straight out of his belly. The best part, however, was topping the shaved ice with the included sweetener for a sugary snack.
A huge commercial success, Frosty set the stage for Snoopy.
Of course, that had a lot to do with Charles Schulz’s Peanuts series, which became a merchandising giant. Department store shelves were filled with dolls, shirts, night lights and books inspired by his famous creation.
Snoopy obviously grew into the most popular character. And that led him to be permanently enshrined in toy history.
Due to the major success of A Charlie Brown Christmas, the sno-cone machine game got an overhaul with the Snoopy line. The machine sold so well for 25 years that Hasbro’s CEO once referred to it as an “annuity” because it just kept providing income for the toy-manufacturing giant.
In 2012, however, Cra-Z-Art took over licensing duties and made a few improvements, including making the hand crank easier to turn. No matter what age you are, there’s no doubt that the Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine is a toy that always delivers tasty results.
Are you a huge Snoopy fan? Who was your favorite character from the Peanuts series?
Tell us in the comments below!