O'Ryans Village Archive Page
Saturday, August 27, 2011
That's right folks! The days are getting noticeably shorter, the nights are getting cooler and I Love it! I'm not too much of a hot summer day kind of person. Autumn is definitely my time of year. However, it does serve to remind me of the snow and bitter cold that we get around here in the Upper Midwest during the winter months. So I relish these few weeks of Autumn weather bliss that we get.

On the subject of weather, let me get very serious for a moment. Hurricane Irene is rumbling up the East Coast of the United States as I write this. We send our prayers and best wishes to our friends, family, and everyone else in the region that you stay safe and suffer the least possible damage from this monster storm.

This time of year brings all types of changes to many parts of the country courtesy of Mother Nature. As I mentioned, we really look forward to the cooler temperatures. Soon the leaves will be changing and falling and our thoughts will turn to the beginning of the Holidays. To some that means Thanksgiving and Christmas. Yep! Same here. But the kick off to our busy season starts with Halloween. Oh yes, the spooky time of year when the ghosts and goblins come out and the Pirates and Superheroes show up at your door in search of the goodies.

Trick or Treat, like all things, have changed from when we were kids. The costumes, the traditions, and even the treats are a different than from years past. When i was a kid we could have drawn a map complete with those little red pins that you see on maps all over the Web now. Of course the pins would indicate not the nearest Sushi joint or Starbuck's, but where the most prime treats could be had. I grew up in a small Midwestern town where everyone knew everyone. And we knew what treats everyone usually handed out on Halloween Night. That changed too. We actually had Trick or Treat at night. It's hard to be spooky and scary in broad daylight, but it is safer.

Here at O'Ryans Village we are getting pretty psyched about what we are rolling out this year for your Trick or Treaters. We have Old Time Halloween candy, some traditional stuff, and a bunch of new treats to greet the little devils with. Witches'Caldrons and Jack-O-Lanterns filled with candy for the long distance gift giving or for having around the house for your Halloween parties. Keep on the look out for our Halloween candy pages to magically appear anytime now at oryans.com.

Grab the rest of the Summer by the horns and have a good time. The Unofficial end of summer is Labor Day, that's next weekend, Don't let the remainder of the season slip away. Autumn will be here before you know it. Then it's time for a road trip. Door County here we come!

Thanks for reading and have a sweet day!

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Friday, August 26, 2011
Every year in late Spring or early Summer we start monitoring the local temperatures of where our customers are ordering from. One of our customer's most popular choices is Chocolate Ice Cubes. Chocolate Ice Cubes melt somewhere around 75 degrees depending on exposure to direct sunlight and humidity. And nobody wants to buy, pay for, and wait for their delicious chocolate to arrive only to have it show up ruined from the heat. We don't like it either, unhappy customers and wasted money, not to mention ruined gourmet chocolates.

Many people sit in front of their computer screens dreaming about capturing some of their favorite treats and are ecstatic to find them in our store, not realizing the process that must occur for their treasures to arrive safely at their home. For a better understanding, follow me through the process.

When you hit the "place order" button, this is what happens in most cases.

- We get an email alert that a new order has been received. That's the exciting part for us!

- Your order appears in our order center control panel listing all the details of your order including shipping info, items ordered, your comments, gift messages etc. Giving us all the basics needed to fulfill your order.

- Every order is reviewed personally by a member of our staff to double check the particulars of your order, verify inventory to fulfill your order, and during this time of year, we check your local temperatures against what you have ordered.

- If everything checks out as explained above, the items you have ordered are pulled from stock and are placed in a shipping box with a copy of the packing slip for the order.

- If all systems are "GO", the order is double checked for accuracy and sealed up for shipping. Once the shipping method is determined, and there are no discrepancies with your order, your order receives the shipping label and is placed in the outgoing area and awaits carrier pick up.

- Usually that day or the next, depending on what time of day your order was placed, your order ships out.

- Now, we are located in the Chicago / Milwaukee area, so depending on where you live, your order will take 1-5 days to get to you once we ship it. Your candy rides along on one of those Fed Ex trucks or U.S. Mail trucks that you see scooting around everywhere. These trucks don't travel at the speed of light nor are they refrigerated. So your precious cargo has to endure the elements just as you would traveling 3 or 4 days in a hot truck with no air conditioning. And hopefully you are home when the package arrives so it doesn't sit on your porch in the Sun until you get home to rescue it. That's why we check the temps.

As the temperatures start to fall, we don't worry so much about this stuff. Cooler weather makes our jobs easier and makes for happier customers. So as you shop our store and decide what to treat yourselves with keep the weather in mind. Once it jumps on the truck, there's not much we can do to protect it. We take all these extra measures to ensure your satisfaction.

If you do need to order meltable candy during the warmer months, consider ice packs and expedited shipping methods. If you're not sure what fits your needs, just call, we'll be happy to figure it out for you and advise you of the options available and the costs involved.

Getting your favorite chocolates, caramels, and taffy during the hot summer months isn't an impossible task, just one that requires a little planning. Review our warm weather shipping advice and general shipping info and FAQ's here.

Glad to be of service!

O'Ryans Village

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Thursday, August 25, 2011
Being in the candy business for so long as we have you sometimes catch yourself just thinking about certain candies or gums or something along those lines. Well, the other day we were discussing creating a gift basket for O'Ryans Village focusing on gum. So we started tossing around the names of all the different gums that would fit the idea of what we had in mind for this gift basket. So here are some of the varieties that we've come up with. Let us know which ones you think should be included, and more importantly, ones that we haven't included that you think might be fun to have in the new gift basket. We of course will be featuring the brands from our Old Time Gum page.

Bazooka (Joe): This all American bubble gum is a must and was the first brand that came up for inclusion. This chunky block of pink bubble gum is as iconic to gum as freedom is to America. It is such a simple pleasure with it's texture, aroma, and flavor that one can't help but to work it around bringing all the flavor out just to get to that moment of truth. The bubble. How many of us have peeled the remnants of this treat off of our faces after the triumph of the big bubble has popped? The bubble is not the only treat of this gum. From the colorful wrapper to the tough guy image of Joe himself and of course the silly jokes found inside all come together to tell us that this is serious gum fun!

Rain-Blo: One of my favorite gums as a kid. I loved the big round, almost jaw breaker shape of this gum with each pack containing the different flavors. There was always a selection process when I bought some Rain-Blo. Which flavor to pop into my mouth first? It was all about that candy coating that gave you the big rush of flavor right from start. I usually grabbed the yellow one with the red polka dots first. Don't know why, just did. I was never disappointed with Rain-Blo, just a little bit of cash and it would go all day. There never was a lot of marketing behind Rain-Blo, just a lot of good fun and flavor.

Razzles: This stuff blew us away when it debuted in the 70's. There were candies and suckers that were candy and had gum in the middle once you got through the candy. But Razzles were candy that you would grind up in your mouth like a Sweettart or a Wacky Wafer, but instead of disappearing in a couple moments, it turned to gum! Not a huge piece, but you had gum now. So the process was, keep eating the candy on top of the gum in your mouth and you just kept getting more gum. Awesome! These guys should've got like the Nobel prize for cool or something we thought, if there were such an award. This treat still behaves the way it did then and is now available in Tropical too.

Hot Dog Gum: What a classic this is. Cool Hot Dog shaped gum that goes through a flavor transition as you chew it. Kind of sweet apple to spicy cinnamon. I think. I can't explain it, you'll just have to try it if you've never had it. Not the best for bubbles, but what a flavor. And you get two pieces in each tube so you can experience it twice. As far marketing for this gum, who doesn't love the crazy dancing hot dogs on the box? Never noticed? They've always reminded me of the treats that did the tantalizing dance for me during intermission at the movies.

Honorary Mention. I love the C. Howards scented gum, but.... that scent would overpower all the rest. These are in a class and box all their own.

Ok, so of course I didn't list them all here. Just a teaser of what will be going into our new Old Time Gum gift basket. Let us know what you think.

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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Pearson Candy Company which has been trying to sell their company for the last year was purchased by equity firm in Connecticut. They just sealed the sweet deal on Monday.
Pearson candy company has been around for over 100 years. They are located in St Paul Larry Hassler has been the owner of Pearson for the last 25 years.

You may not recognize the Person candy name, but I am sure you know their old time candy bars. The are the makers of the salted nut roll, nut goodie bars, mint patties and the bun candy bars which are available in vanilla, maple and caramel. They were also the maker of the seven up candy bar which has been discontinued many years ago.

As the times change and the demand for feeling nostalgic increases it was hard for Hassler to continue to compete in the old time candy market. It was either sell his company or expand and he felt it was in his best interest to sell. If feels for the company to continue to stand strong it really needs to expand it's candy line and offer more sweet treats for the retailers and consumers.

Brynwood Partners confirmed that Michael Keller will take over as chief executive and president. Larry Hassler will stay on as an consultant of the company.

So now with the sale of yet another candy manufacturer it makes me wonder. Will Brynwood Partners change these old time candy bars as many new companies do ? Or will the realize they shouldn't mess with a good thing and remain making them without any changes. I guess all we can do it wait and see what happens.

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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Caramel Apple Orchard Pops have arrived. Caramel apple pops are one of our top selling suckers. A tart green apple sucker covered with caramel. Tootsie Candy Company comes out with an assorted bag of the apple suckers for the Halloween Season this are available for a limited time only and sell out very quickly.

For those of you who love the caramel apple pops the apple orchard pops are a must try. Each bag comes in assorted apple flavors. Not only do you get the traditional caramel pops, but you also get suckers in Red Macintosh and Golden Delicious apple flavor. All of them are covered with a creamy caramel.

The suckers with green wrappers are the original apple pops. The suckers with the red wrappers are the Red Macintosh and the yellow wrappers are the Golden Delicious. It is amazing how good these taste. As you first eat these you get the taste of a rich creamy caramel, as you work your way through the sucker you hit the apple flavor. The combination of the two is remarkable.

These pops are different then most suckers as like the charms pops , they are a flat oval shaped suckers, where most suckers are round. Many of our customers tell us the like the shape of these better then a round lollipops as they fit in their mouth better. We have found that adults like suckers as much as kids to. I am not sure why but they do.

I wish that Tootsie made these suckers year round, however they are only available in the fall time. We have customers that call all the time for these apple pops and actually get put on a waiting list and are emailed with they arrive.

If you are looking for something a little bit different to hand out to your trick or treaters for their Halloween Candy give these suckers a try.

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Monday, August 22, 2011
The outdoor as we call it, has been the source of many good times for me as a child and later as a parent. The Outdoor, better known as the Drive-In theatre, is an American institution. It has been entertaining Americans for decades. Like all things, the experience has changed over the years. The fun and adventure remains.

A friend of ours was over at the house the other night and we mentioned "the Outdoor" and he replied, "What"? So we translated. I had to think for a moment of the term that he would understand. The drive in theatre I responded. You know, like in the Flinstones. Oh! He said and immediately began telling stories of his memories as a kid at the Drive-In. We talked for over an hour just about the outdoor. Swapping stories of some of the great times that we've had at the drive in.

As a kid growing up in the '60s, we made an event of it. Pillows, sleeping bag and pajamas, Mom knew I'd never make it through the whole night. The theatre we went to had a big playground and a mini ride on train that circled the property of the theatre. So we'd get there late afternoon and make a day of it. Mom would make some sandwiches to bring along being that we were sure to work up an appetite at the playground and the concession stand wasn't open yet.

We would get all settled back in the car at dusk, Dad would hang the speaker on his window, light the Pic mosquito coil up on the dash which was painted steel then, not textured leather and we were ready to go. Very seldom would I make it 30 minutes into the feature and I'd be begging for a trip to the concession stand. What a place! Burgers, hot dogs, pizza, and popcorn and every candy imaginable. Pizza, a coke, and usually a Chunky bar was my request.

Having times like those sure make for vivid memories and great stories. This is why we do what we do. We welcome your stories and comments anytime.

O'Ryans Village

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Sunday, August 21, 2011

Over the past 50 years the candy companies have introduced new candy, discontinued others, and in some cases brought back the discontinued brands. They got it all figured out, right. Some companies insist they know best which candies to produce, while others listen to their customers and decide based upon their customer's feedback which ones to produce. In some instances, a company will drop a brand that is a favorite of consumers due to production difficulties or what they consider low volume. Tens of thousands of a brand may be purchased by consumers, yet the manufacturer will consider it low volume and discontinue the item. This item either goes away forever, or in recent years, new companies emerge and feel it worthwhile to produce and distribute the item. So, it's all about business, not really about what you and I like.

One such manufacturer is Classic Caramels. They have bought up the rights to a number of old time candies and reincarnated them. They seem to be reinventing the recipes to match their production styles. Most times the new product is not as we remember it. Sometimes it's pretty close, other times, not so close. They bought and reintroduced the Flipsticks candy several years ago. Flipsticks were one of my favorites as a kid because of the unique texture and flavor. The new product is a weak flavored stick of hard taffy. Still a good taffy, just not the same.

The Original Black Cow was basically a chocolate Slo-Poke. Stiff chocolate caramel on a sucker stick. They were great and stuck like crazy glue to your teeth. The new Black Cow is different in many ways. This great old classic has been resurrected into an honest to goodness instant classic. The taste like many redo's is different. It is a richer chocolate, blended into a soft taffy like texture.I guess you could call it a caramel too. Taffy or caramel, it's hard to pinpoint it. You be the judge. Not the original, but in my opinion, almost better. If I tried eating an original Black Cow at my current age, I would lose my teeth to it. The new Black Cow is pleasant to bite or twist off a hunk and let it melt in your mouth. And the flavor goes all the way through.

Along with the improved flavor and texture of the modern version comes better packaging too. The stick is gone, and for good reason. This allows Classic Caramels to package the entire contents in a slick sealed foil wrapper instead of waxed paper wrapped around the bottom of the candy. We all know air kills food. The new packaging doesn't allow this to happen. You can still freeze it and crack it if you desire. The foil wrapper actually makes this method of consumption quite convenient. Freeze it, crack it, tear it open and eat it right from the package.

In conclusion, although Black Cow has changed from the original classic candy, it is very much made in the old fashion style complimented by modern techniques. It's a win win proposition. So check out the new Black Cow, I doubt you'll be disappointed. Check into our Facebook page too. We've been known to give this and other great old time candies away to our friends just for playing our Tuesday trivia, answering silly surveys, or giving us your feedback.

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