A nice ghoulish twist on the Lik-M-Aid sticks.

A nice ghoulish twist on the Lik-M-Aid sticks.

Summer is my favorite time of year, so I always reluctantly adjust to fall. I complain about this every year, despite the fact that complaining changes nothing. I’m not saying that summer is perfect; the days can be too hot and too smoggy, but the days are longer, the colors of summer products are cheerful, and there is an abundance of fresh fruit and vegetables. With fall, you get the crisp weather, the bluer skies, and a certain something in the air. However, my main complaint is that the days get shorter, ultimately leading up to Daylight Savings Time, which transforms fall into a season I call “bummer.” Nothing worse than still working at the computer to finish my day’s work while the world has turned pitch black.

09_NESTLE Halloween PackageThe festive holidays are in fall and winter to help compensate for descent into darkness, and they really do create a great distraction and a lot of fun. First up is Halloween, a top holiday for candy and all the revelry that comes with it. Judging by the expense of vintage Halloween items, it would appear to be the most enjoyed holiday of the year, especially for its aesthetics. For some reason, the traditional colors of orange, yellow, and black have made way for purple, orange, and black, but you will find little of this color scheme in the wonderful vintage ephemera in this following gallery.

Clanky the Chocolate RobotBack in the day when kids didn’t drink so much soda for their sugar fix, they relied on Kool-Aid, Funny Face, or chocolate milk. Any of these could be enjoyed all year round, but fall was the time to shift gears and enjoy a nice warm mug of cocoa. It could be made from Hershey’s syrup or powder, Swiss Miss, or Nestle’s Quik.

I think of cocoa as candy you can drink. Over the decades, cocoa and chocolate milk companies have pandered to childish interests and fads in order to increase their sales. This has been a win-win situation for kids with a sweet tooth. The companies have also upped the ante of delight at times by offering special Halloween packaging for their products. The following gallery shows some classic packaging for our chocolate milk and cocoa favorites.

On a related note… we love Clanky, Clanky the Spaceman!

Ahem! Where was I? Ah, back to Nestle, Halloween, and lost products of yesteryear. Anyone remember Keen? Nestle launched this powdered drink mix in the early 60s in what appears to be an attempt to compete with Funny Face. I’ve included a gallery of their packets just because they’re so fun! They also made a monster version named “Chiller” for Halloween. Hope to get my hands on this sometime. In the meantime, check out a commercial for Keen Chillers from 1966. The audio is vintage, and the video maker thoughtfully included images of the Chiller packets. Very cool!


Whatever your favorite season is, have lots of fun this fall!

For more Halloween candy memories, visit

Darlene Lacey

About Darlene Lacey

Darlene is the author of "Classic Candy: America's Favorite Sweets, 1950-80" and curator of the Candy Wrapper Museum, which is comprised of her personal collection which she began as a teenager in the 70s. The CWM has been featured in numerous TV shows, magazines, newspapers and blogs, and made its art gallery debut in 2010 at the Scion Space's "Palate" show.
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