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Nostalgia 👴 Kids breakfast cereal with free prize in box

Maister

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Do they even put free prizes in boxes of cereal anymore? For some reason, I'm thinking the answer is 'no'. I guess this is also a tacit admission that I haven't had any Trix, Lucky Charms, or Cap'n Crunch in quite a while.

How about you, do you remember some long distant Saturday morning tearing into an unopened box of Froot Loops before your parents were out of bed, and thrusting your grubby little unwashed hand in the cereal fishing around to retrieve the much desired treasure inside?

I must have had a very shallow learning curve as a lad because I can recall being disappointed with disturbing regularity at how CHEAP the prize usually proved to be. 99% of the time it was absolute trash that never got used or played with (well, maybe just once - enough to figure out the item was just cheap plastic garbage), but even so I continued to find the prospect of finding some treasure in the next box somehow exciting. What are some memorable "treasures" you got? What are some of the 1% items you got that you found actually useful, or played with to any extent?

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Maister

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Who remembers cutting cardboard records off cereal boxes and playing them on a cheap little record player?

We learned to open the box from the bottom, where the prizes settled.
Yes! It was on the back of a box of Super Sugar Crisp some time in the early 70's. True story, we were staying at my grandparent's house one weekend and that morning my grandmother ceremoniously handed over the record she'd cut off the box. I noticed it was badly scratched up and grandma responded "yeah there was some kind of fuzzy or bumpy stuff on it. I tried to scratch as much of it off as I could." Turns out the 'bumpy stuff' she was referring to was the grooves on the record. o_O
 

Super Amputee Cat

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I think they are probably one of the most collectable cereal box prizes. Full sets are selling for $50 or more on ebay. I think the earlier ones sell for even more.
 

Maister

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I always loved the submarine I got from Frosted Flakes. You put some baking soda in it and it would go up and down in the water.
This would be one of the 1% toys I enjoyed. Yes, I played with the submarine several times over the years
 

michaelskis

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I don't recall anything good ever in a cereal box.

On the other hand... Happy Meal toys were Awesome... not so much now.
 

Maister

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Dan

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I'll never forget the model cars that used to be in boxes of Quisp in the 1970s. They doors, trunks, and hoods that would open and close! I can't find anything about them online, though.

I remember the license plates in Honeycomb, too! I always hung the ones I got from the back of my bike seat.
 

Super Amputee Cat

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I think I remember those mini-plates, they were maybe a half inch by inch and and a half. I didn't collect them, but do seem to recall getting a Michigan one.

I thought they were so cool when I first saw them in Summer of '80. I just had to get a whole set. (A lot cheaper than buying 50 cereal boxes and little chance of hitting all 50 states). The numbers were embossed and they generally corresponded with the letter and number combination systems of each particular state. But after 1982 or so the quality declined as they all became flat letter plates and personalized "vanity" type plates.

I guess Honeycomb - or someone - has been doing this since at least the 1950s. Here is a set from 1953.

Mini License Plates 1953 (1).jpg
 

Super Amputee Cat

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I think I remember those mini-plates, they were maybe a half inch by inch and and a half. I didn't collect them, but do seem to recall getting a Michigan one.
Actually if you remember them only being and inch and a half, you may be thinking of Keychain type plates where you could get your own car's plate number, perhaps as a reminder when you're at a hotel registration or something. As the previous photo shows, the cereal box plates are five inches.

Is this more like what you remember?

Keychain License Plate 1.jpg
 

The Terminator

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By I time I was a little one in the 1990s, cereal box toys were relegated to things like plastic spoons and very cheaply made Buzz Lightyear figurines. I seem to recall some of them coming in boxes of cinnamon toast crunch, golden snaps and honey nut cheerios.

I remember thinking "box tops for education" was about saving up boxtops to win prizes circa 1998 or so (1st, 2nd grade for me), and when my mom told me they would raise money for my school instead, I responded by saying "that stinks, I hate school!" and ripping up all the boxtops I had saved up.


Cereal Box records are neat. Im surprised enough of them still exist to be played by youtubers 45+ years later, the cardboard cant be good for more than a handful of plays, and even when new, they sounded like arse.
 

Maister

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Actually if you remember them only being and inch and a half, you may be thinking of Keychain type plates where you could get your own car's plate number, perhaps as a reminder when you're at a hotel registration or something. As the previous photo shows, the cereal box plates are five inches.

Is this more like what you remember?

View attachment 51122
Yeah, those are the ones I was thinking of
 
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