The Great Saturday Morning Experience

Cereal Spotlight: Lucky Charms

L to R: Lucky Charms as it first appeared, the box I mainly remember, and as it looks today.

Lucky Charms has always been one of my all time favorite cereals. Its history began in 1964 when General Mills executive VP John Holahan came up with the idea to mix Cheerios and chopped up pieces of circus peanuts when tasked with coming up with a new cereal for kids. It became the first cereal with marshmallows. I wonder how bizarre the idea must have seemed back then since it had never been tried before. The marshmallow pieces by the way are officially referred to as marbits by General Mills. The first marbit line up consisted of green clovers, pink hearts, orange stars, and yellow moons. Instead of just using Cheerios, they shaped the oat pieces into bells, fish, arrowheads, clovers and X’s. The marbits have changed often through the years. Of the original marbits, only the pink heart remains.

They started off with an expensive ad campaign that included ads in comic books and animated commercials featuring Lucky the Leprechaun with his catch phrase “They’re magically delicious!”. His shtick was to use magic powers to get away from hungry children who were always, as he put it, “after me Lucky Charms!”  Arthur Anderson was the original voice of Lucky the Leprechaun. He voiced the character from 1963 until 1992. He appeared on TV shows such as “The Defenders”, “Car 54 Where Are You”, “Route  66”, “Dark Shadows” and in movies like “Midnight Cowboy”, “Zelig”, and “Green Card”. He was also the voice of Eustace Bagge on “Courage the Cowardly Dog”.

That first year kids could order Lucky

2 thoughts on “Cereal Spotlight: Lucky Charms

    1. My mom really loved circus peanuts so I had them many times as a kid. I can sort of see the connection to the marbits and how he was inspired with them as a version of a marshmallow that would work in cereal. It still seems odd to me that he came up with the idea of marshmallows and cereal together in the first place. Of course I’m glad he did!

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