Win a Tootsie Pop?

Tootsie PopWe were given Tootsie Roll Pops today in class and and I was reminded of one of the great joys of my childhood. When I was younger, there was a way to get a free Tootsie Roll Pop. And it has to do with the image on the right. Click on the image on the right and let me know what you notice. Do you see how this wrapper is different than other wrappers? Do you see why one might get excited when looking at this wrapper?

Apparently, I was the only person who had ever actually won the free Tootsie Roll Pops. Many people had never even heard of this. So, click on the picture on the right – take a long, hard look at it and leave a comment with how this wrapper might allow someone to win a free Tootsie Roll Pop.


  1. jessica hb says

    I’m all about the free tootsie roll pop. How could they not know about the star? :-) Does this mean I get a free one?

    P.S. Your site is showing up weird on my computer…not sure if it’s my problem or your site…

  2. Truth Seeker says

    So the star is not on every wrapper? Wow! I did not know that. It makes you kind of wonder about advertisements. How much do they change on you over the years and you don’t even notice. Hey…I could use that as an illustration some day!

    Have a great one!

  3. says

    Bro. Star. Totally. I’m with you. Maybe it was a Washington thing? If it wasn’t real, I did a good job of stealing from “the man” by turning them in to my local candy store for another tootsie pop. Thanks for the memories.

  4. says


    The star was all we went for as kids. I don’t remember specifically recieving a free Tootsie Pop, but I remember you were cooler with the star. I think maybe my teacher would give us free ones for the stars…

    Star = Coolness.

    (I’m from AZ)

  5. Sarah Leer says

    ummmm, in Arkansas the star was the stuff. we saved the wrappers with that damn star hoping for free pops. however, it WAS Arkansas…so we didn’t have much else going on.

  6. lauren says

    it’s not JUST the star, right? it’s the arrow shooting at the star… at least that was the only way we got to win a free pop. i remember when the promotion ended… i never knew until i took in about 5 wrappers and was shot down!! sad day

  7. says

    Yeah, so when I was home from college a few years ago, I found an envelope with about 20 wrappers. I learned a good lesson about not hoarding.

    However. . . speaking of stars

    U.S. Bank has a 5-star policy on customer service. One of their things is that if you stand in line for more than 5 minutes and call them on it, they put $5 in your account. I used to despise walking ino the bank at 4:30 on a Friday and seeing the long line of paystubs. Now I plan on it and rejoice at the sight of long lines.

    I haven’t decided yet if I think it’s ethical or not, but I do know that it’s less painful than selling plasma.

    Thanks for bringing back good childhood memories Adam.

  8. Ringo says

    It is terrible that this company is allowed to portray an “Indian” shooting at a star wearing traditional headdress and sporting a bow and arrow. It is intolerant and bigoted.

    /sarcasm off.

  9. Katie says

    Not a Washington thing. I was born in rural upper peninsula Michigan and looked hungrily for the “indian shooting the star.” Actually I think it was when I moved to WA that I started hearing people say it was a myth!

    I love lore lore like that. Always have. Even when I was little I deliberately kept myself in the dark about whether or not the free lollypop thing was true. Dispite my sweet tooth, the satisfaction was in the suspense and the mystery.

  10. David says

    Yeah, I am from WA and the Native Indigenous First Nations person shooting the star was worth trading for. I think I remember trading a Return of the Jedi card with Princess Leia in the bikini for 5 star wrappers. And that was an awesome bikini!

  11. Carrie says

    I remember looking for the indian with the star when I was a little kid! We may not have gotten free candy directly from the Tootsie Roll people, but there was a small grocery store near my grandma’s house that used to honor the legend of the indian and the star. We always checked, everytime……….I still do……just for fun!
    I live in Iowa ;)

  12. Erin says


  13. Stephnee says

    My 6 year old (who’s part Sioux Indian) knows that his ancestor shooting for the stars means good luck…. The Tootsie Roll company very specifically says they have never endorsed it, but I’d rather have a great teeth than more cavities :)

  14. krebs says

    The indian shooting the star is the best of the best lucks. It must be a full indian, not cut in half at the edge of the wrapper. The prize is the wrapper itself.

  15. Tabitha says

    I work at a bank inside of a grocery store and one of the guys just brought us some pops. 2 of us looked for the star!!! So I googled “Tootsie Star” and this came up. I’m excited! I didn’t get a star, but I got cherry. That’s good enough for me!
    The 7-11 used to do it but there are new owners (Mishawaka, IN) (mishawaka///indians? correlation? I don’t know haha)
    and A “Tom Thumb” in Homestead, FL used to do it for me as a tot.

  16. says

    I’m from Wisconsin and I don’t remember ever actually trading in the rappers for a free Tootsie Pop, but we were told you could, but the wrapper was good luck ONLY if it contained the man shooting a star (in full – couldn’t be cut off at the edge).

  17. Andrew says

    Between 1980 and 1984 I traded in several Tootsie Pop wrappers featuring the indian for free pops at the neighborhood 7-Eleven in Garden Home, Oregon (suburb of Portland). There was confusion even then among elementary school students as to whether the myth was real, and on several occassions clerks at 7-eleven turned down the request. In general, however, we weren’t turned away. Until one day a sign appeared at the candy basket informing us wrappers with stars and indians would no longer be honored.

  18. EDDIE WRETCH says

    I had a feeling that this “contest” was not officialy endorsed by the company, so I looked it up via Google and found out that I was correct. When I was a child, here in Portland Oregon, there was a little store down the hill from my grandparent’s house where they would honor the Indian and the Star. I figured that I would not be able to continue this trade-in for candy for as long as we (the kids) would have like to, due to the fact that we never found published guidelines surrounding this promotion containing a beginning and ending date for it. It’s just nice that the store owners were kind enough to give the kids free candy if they found the Indian shooting the star. The oddest part if this experience is that, I believe I found out about it from my mother. The weirdest part of this entire experience is that, knowing my mother as I do, I rhink that my mother’s mentioning this promotion was based on her own incorrect recolections from her own childhood.

  19. Sasha says

    I always look for that star and everything, but I never like, turn it in.. because I never thought of it. I don’t realy get it at all.. well kinda in a way. So like, I’m confused. Ya, in a way.. I guess.

  20. christina says

    I have the same wrapper only mine is brown, I never heard of ” the free tootsie, if you have a Indian shooting a star” before, well until now…. So being the person I am , I will keep it forever and see what happends…….

  21. StupidRich says

    born in Pacoima Ca but my mother was from Boise Idaho she took us to visit back when i was a kid in 89″ there was a little market that would Honor that Promotion
    i was just telling my co workers the story while enjoying a tootsi pop i now have 3 wrapper and im goin back to claim my prize..

  22. rachel sarber says

    Isn’t the guy with the star facing the opposite way than it usually is on regular rappers with the person shooting the star?

  23. Abby Guinn says

    yea i only heard of this myth like yesterday. i moved around a lot and now i live in georgia. im an 13 and in the 8th grade and ive only jus now …. well yesterday …heard of this.

    yesterday we were reviewing for a test (that took place today) and Mr. Horne handed candy if you got a review question right. he was passing a variety of candy but everytime he gave me 1 i got a tootsie pop. now i dont mind having tootsie pops cause they are delicious. but i find it strange that out of all 3 tootsie pops that i had all had a whole indian and star on its wrapper but no one else in the class who got a tootsie pop had a star on theirs. coincidence? i dont know. but thats when i heard about this myth about the indian and the star and something about goodluck and a free tootsie pop. i wasnt sure about it so thats when i went to look it up today. everyone so far online has said that its sort of rare to get the indian but i just noticed that everytime ive eaten one there was that indian and star on the wrapper…….. weird huh?

  24. Debra says

    I just got a tootsie pop with an indian shooting a star and decided to search for this site.
    Thanks for the info.
    I am 37 from Portland, Or and always knew the star was special but never tried to redeem them.

  25. Mandy says

    I was telling some people today about getting a free tootsie roll pop with the indian and star, and they’d never heard of it. As far as I know, the place that accepted the wrappers when we were kids still takes them.

  26. wendy says

    I to was aware of the myth about the indaian and star.. so back in the 90’s i wrote tootsie pop and ask them…. thay were kind enough to send me a nice little later about the indian and star along with a story of the myth and how it got started…so for all those who want an answer to the long lived question fell frell to write to tootsie pop and they will send you a nice little letter as well,, the made it look so nice that a had it hanging on my oldest sons bedroom wall……sadley enough this is just a myth…

  27. James_in_Wenatchee, WA says

    I, too, have capitalized on this Urban Legend when, as a kid, I used to go to the Plaza Superjet mini-mart here in Wenatchee, WA and could receive a free one if the wrapper had the Indian boy shooting an arrow at the star.

  28. says

    I heard this too, I lived in AZ when I heard this…. I don’t even think I tried to turn the star wrappers in but I found several of them….

    If it’s not endorsed what were the stars for?

  29. says

    Yummy. Just finished a raspberry Tootsie Roll Pop – Indian shooting a star on the wrapper and all!

    I heard the stories growing up, but never tried to trade in my wrapper. But, like someone else mentioned, if you got an Indian shooting a star on your wrapper, you were the “cool” or “lucky” one!

  30. tiffany says

    Grandma and Grandpa used to own N&N Sinclair station in Alden Iowa. They honored the Indian shooting a star wrapper. ‘Course we really got as much candy as we wanted anyways, but I still remember saving those Indian shooting the star wrappers, the Casey’s next door also honored the trade in…. Now that I have children of my own, I plan on taking our wrappers into town and see if they do it here at the Kangaroo Station. We live in georgia now. I”m sure that this tradition is still alive and well in the Deep South. Wish me luck!

  31. Ryan says

    actually, i buy the tootsie pops by the box i have a stack of stars and when my cousins and nephews come over i give them one each and take them to the store down the street where they still give you a free tootsie pop for having a star on the wrapper. hahahah the tradition is still up and running here in chicago, It’s still a happy moment when you get those special wrappers

  32. Sara says

    im not an aldult but im 11 years old!I was eating a tootsie roll pop and i saw an indian on the wrapper is it true that if you take to a candy store ill get a free lollipop?! Please dont swear its cursing GOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    love you all


  33. Kelli says

    I used to take my wrapper with the Indian shooting the star to our local gas station and they honored the free tootsie roll pop

  34. Cali says

    Yup. When I was a kid (80s) in Portland Oregon we could trade in the Indian shooting a star wrapper at the local mini mark for a free tootsie roll pop. OH the good ol’ days! :-)

  35. Mary says

    ringo pertaining to feb 14 u r an idiot!!!!

    I have heard of the myth but I didn’t know it wasn’t true. When I was a kid we used to go to the gas station and get a free sucker with our wrapper. Now my son has one and I was looking it up to see where to go and I came across this sight. This is a let down. I am going to mail my son a sucker and let him think it’s from tight wallet Tootsie Roll! I’m 41 and from MN.

  36. Deja says

    I always heard that you had to hit a trifecta of images: Three full circles, three full Indians and one of them had to be shooting at a star. I had never seen a wrapper matching all three criterion until now. It is amazing. I sent a link to this page to my sister who always thought it couldn’t happen.
    Thank you for sharing your beautiful wrapper.

  37. Maria says

    I had a mini mart in Vancouver, WA that let me trade in the pops with the indian shooting a star. Early 90’s. Crazy to know that the tootsie pop factory doesn’t support such a little thing like that. Of course if they’d been handing out lolli’s since the 30’s… I suppose that does add up.

  38. Dawn says

    Growing up near Chicago, this was a very popular myth. I remember that there was also a “bad” luck symbol too, but I can not remember exactly what it was….anyone remember?

  39. Dawn says

    I purchased a bag of the miniature tootsie pops for the office, and one of the wrappers did have the Indian shooting the star. I even have three full circles. Trifecta BABY! LOL

  40. Hatcher says

    Of course it’s the Indian shooting a bow and arrow at a star. I thought everybody knew this. I have learned over the years that not many people have ever heard of it.

  41. Tko says

    I grew up in california when I was 6 or 7 I sent and there were a few stores near where I lived that traded a free tootsie pop for a full indian shooting the star I would go to the store and by like 5 of them open them all and then search for the indian and star and redeem them right then I would rewrap the “nonwinners” and stick the ones without wrappers in my mouth good memories thanks for bringing them back to the surface. for the record when I was 6 or 7 my mom told me I had to send in 5 star wrappers to the company for a free bag of tootsie pops I sent in 10 hopeing for 2 bags and just got a letter saying they never had a promotion like that and wrote a little story about ” the Indian Wrapper” if I can find it while I am orginizing my mothers house I’ll put it on here

  42. Tulley says

    The Ben Franklin in our neighborhood used to honor the free Tootsie Pop for an Indian on the wrapper. As a kid it made eating them more fun. The Tootsie Roll company claims to have never gicen one away for free; maybe they should start.

  43. jenny, santacruz, ca says

    dude, its not just the indean you need more than that, its the whole indean with a star, and 3 whole complet circles, yours is alottle cut of on the bottom one

    and btw if anyone says the company has never given one out, thats a lie cuz my step uncle worked there, and when i was a kid and i visited him at work and i happened to have all that stuff on it the receptionist gave me some free ones. so i guess tech. they are lieing bout not giving out a free one ever…

  44. says

    The wrapper had to not only have the Indian and the star, but it also had to three COMPLETE “tootsie roll POP” rings! That was the kicker! See, lots of wrappers have the Indian and the Star, they’re not that uncommon. But to get one with three complete uncut “rings”! Now that was special. Or at least that was the case in a little town in the south where I spent my summers when I was a kid. There was a dime store in the center of town that would honor the wrapper exchange thing.

  45. Austin From Iowa says

    It was a myth. Only way you could get free ones was when stores heard rumors and took the loss profit. I remember takin about 100 of them to the local Amoco and was completly shut down. There is an indian on every third wrapper (scientifically speaking) I didn’t know this until I went to the tootsie website lol

  46. says

    I have the same one exept light blue im really confused because peeps say that you get a free ice cream i dont see that happening and i have good luck 2 it was weird because i won of voting who in AMFV (out of my hole family 5 people)

  47. Diane says

    I’m from Texas and we went to mini marts and they traded the wrapper for a free one…. Until i saw this i thought we made it up

  48. ashley says

    I’m from iowa and I remember our local caseys would give us a free one with each star. Went trick or treating this past weekend and I stole one of my sons and I was curious to know if they still did it and came across this blog. The little things they take away from kids:( makes me sad.

  49. Lydia says

    I just now told my fiance about the free tootsie roll pop and he didn’t believe me about how I used to collect them and get free pops. So when he google it to see if it was true we saw this blog. Thank you for posting this. The link didn’t work maybe because its been soo long since you originally posted the blog.

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