10 Things You Didn’t Know About Friendly’s from 10 Things You Didn’t Know About Friendly’s

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Friendly’s

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10 Things You Didn’t Know About Friendly’s

Photo Modified: Flickr/ Mike Mozart/ CC4.0

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Friendly’s

What kid doesn’t love Friendly’s? If you grew up on the East Coast, you most likely have fond memories of this popular regional chain. But there’s a lot more to Friendly’s than ice cream; here are 10 things you didn’t know about it. 

The Founders Were 18 and 20 Years Old

Friendly’s

The Founders Were 18 and 20 Years Old

Curtis was 18 and Prestley was 20 when they borrowed $547 from their parents to open the first shop in 1935, after having trouble finding summer jobs during the Great Depression. Amazingly, both brothers are still alive; Curtis is 99 and Prestley is 101!

The Blake Brothers May Not Own the Company Anymore, but They’re Still Active

Friendly’s

The Blake Brothers May Not Own the Company Anymore, but They’re Still Active

Think Curtis and Prestley are enjoying a hands-off retirement? Think again. Hours after Friendly’s announced that Dean Foods would be taking over its ice cream business on May 11, Prestley purchased 100,000 shares of Dean Foods stock, saying "I wanted to show my support to Dean Foods. I want people to know that I think about Friendly every single day." He’s also currently auctioning off a faithful replica of Monticello he had built on a whim. As for Curtis, he was most recently in the news last October, when he got into a spat with a school he’d donated $1 million to. 

It Was Owned by Hershey’s Throughout the 1980s

Photo Modified: Flickr/ Mike Mozart/ CC4.0

It Was Owned by Hershey’s Throughout the 1980s

Looking to diversify its portfolio, Hershey Foods purchased Friendly’s from the Blake brothers for $162 million in 1979. Within six years the chain expanded to 740 locations, but the company had trouble keeping up with the growth, and the proliferation of fast food chains cut into its business. Hershey’s sold the chain to a company called TRC in 1988 for $375 million. 

The ‘’’s” Wasn’t Officially Added Until 1989

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The ‘’’s” Wasn’t Officially Added Until 1989

Believe it or not, the brand name didn’t officially become “Friendly’s” until 1989, even though the company had colloquially been called that for decades by then. The company is still officially known as the Friendly Ice Cream Corporation

Employees Have Some Wacky Job Titles

Photo Modified/ Flickr: Mike Mozart/ CC4.0

Employees Have Some Wacky Job Titles

A major complaint among diners during the chain’s rough patch in the early 2000s was the lack of friendliness, ironically, of the chain’s employees. Subsequently, all employees were forced to re-interview and be re-hired, and were retrained if they made the cut. Today, the employee who mans the soda fountain is called a “scoopologist,” and wait staff are called “memory makers” (seriously). 

It Holds the Guinness World Record for World’s Largest Dessert Party

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It Holds the Guinness World Record for World’s Largest Dessert Party

In July 2013, Friendly’s hosted an old-fashioned ice cream social under a tent on the lawn in front of its Wilbraham, Massachusetts, headquarters. 794 guests attended, making it the world’s largest ice cream party. Guinness representatives were on hand to make it official

It’s Had a Partnership With Easter Seals for 35 Years

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It’s Had a Partnership With Easter Seals for 35 Years

Every Valentine’s Day, Friendly’s hosts a “Cones for Kids” fundraiser to benefit the charity Easter Seals. Over the years, more than $23 million has been raised through the partnership.

The Website Is Loaded With Deals and Offers

friendlys.com

The Website Is Loaded With Deals and Offers

Friendly’s really wants your business, so if you head to the Offers page on its website, there’s plenty to entice you. You can get $3 off an ice cream cake, 25 percent off your next visit, and a free sundae on your birthday, and other perks. 

A Single Scoop of Chocolate Ice Cream Contains 110 Calories

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A Single Scoop of Chocolate Ice Cream Contains 110 Calories

If you want to treat yourself to a scoop of chocolate ice cream at Friendly’s, it’s not too bad for you, with only 110 calories and six grams of fat. The chain’s unhealthiest ice cream flavor is Hunka Chunk PB Fudge, which contains 180 calories and 11 grams of fat per scoop. 

And the Unhealthiest Menu Item Is…

Yelp/ Kendra E.

And the Unhealthiest Menu Item Is…

The Loaded Waffle Fries, which are topped with cheese sauce, bacon, and sour cream. An order clocks in at 1,700 calories, 119 grams of fat, and 4,990 milligrams of sodium. 

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10 Things You Didn’t Know About Friendly’s