Looking back on my first postings for this website is interesting. I was fascinated with Peeps, perplexed by the amazing durability of their appeal for nearly 60 years. After hunting for Peeps, not realizing that they were readily available at every Duane Reade, I found them at Dylan's Candy Bar on the Upper East Side and did a story, Peeps, on April 16, 2006.
What more appropriately named company, Just Born, Inc., and town, Bethlehem (Pennsylvania), for the manufacture of an Easter candy. However, Just Born, Inc. has its roots in New York City. The founder, Sam Born, was a candy maker from Russia who emigrated to the U.S. via Brooklyn in 1910. In 1923, Born opened a small candy-making and retail store in Brooklyn, New York. He marketed the freshness of his line of daily-made candy with a sign that declared, “Just Born.” In 1932, they moved operations to an empty printing factory in Bethlehem, PA, and in 1953, Just Born acquired the Rodda Candy Company of Lancaster, PA. Although Rodda was best known for its jelly beans, it also made a small line of marshmallow products, which included a popular Easter Peep that was made by laboriously hand-squeezing marshmallow through pastry tubes.
Inspired by David Letterman's nightly Top Ten lists, I have written two lists: the top ten reasons New Yorkers love and hate Peeps.
Top Ten Reasons New Yorkers Love Peeps
10. Even in New York City, where else will you find blue or pink food?
9. There's a diversity of skin colors
8. You can buy Peeps at Duane Reade
7. You don't need to cook Peeps
6. There are still inexpensive things to be found in New York City
5. Peeps are nonfat
4. Peeps are the perfect food to eat while walking
3. You can celebrate Easter without a trip to St. Patrick's
2. In New York City, we got the little stuff too
1. If left in your car, no one will break in to steal your Peeps
Top Ten Reasons New Yorkers Hate Peeps
10. Peeps are not vegan
9. Peeps are not edgy
8. You can't really serve Peeps in a $1.5 million dollar condo
7. You can buy Peeps at Duane Reade
6. New Yorkers don't eat food that comes in blue or pink
5. You don't have to wait in line for Peeps
4. Peeps are not kosher
3. Peeps are not artisanal
2. Peeps are not made "somewhere in Brooklyn"
1. Peeps don't come in black
Like New York City itself, Peeps are a Love/Hate thing :)