The Greatest Lie We Were Ever Told
Think back a good ways into your childhood. Saturday morning cartoons and on pops the commercial for a Tootsie Roll Pop. Mr. Owl would try out the sucker to see how many licks it would take, and you just knew he was going to eat it each and every time.
Other than the question of how many licks it took to get to the center of one, there was also that one rumor that claimed if wrapper had a shooting a star, you would receive a free Tootsie Roll Pop. I remember hearing this as far back as first or second grade in the playground of Maplewood Elementary. Obviously, none of us had the means to drive down to the gas station and try it out, nor were we really supposed to be eating candy at school. it's not like you could just ask your parents to swing into the store because you got a free sucker coming to you from the one you smuggled into class.
I never personally tried to exchange the wrapper, but often think about whether or not people actually try it. They really do. There are tons of people who get one and go exchange it for a free one at gas stations. Perhaps this is a legitimate program that Tootsie Roll is offering? Think again.
According to their website, they have a dedicated spot that explains the shooting star. As a matter of fact, the legend of the star has been around as far back as 1931. The candy maker does not know how the legend got started but it seems to span across many generations of fans. They state that the shooting star graphic appears regularly on the wrapper, once out of every four to six suckers. That also happens to be the same frequency of all of the other graphics that are designed on the wrapper. Officially, Tootsie Roll Industries does not honor the free sucker program but does encourage consumers to feel lucky each time they see it.