Every year, the parish I grew up in had their parish festival on Memorial Day weekend. We schoolkids celebrated with Hot Lunch Day (no daily hot lunches for us) which usually consisted of Domino’s pizza and Grippo’s chips, but we got the added bonus of popsicles: usually, the “Fireworks” pops (we called them “bomb pops”– no idea why) made of blue raspberry, cherry, and lemonade layers of flavor. At home, we had Otter Pops– squeezed out of the plastic wrapper. I somehow remember Strawberry Short Kook as my favorite. I probably haven’t had a Bomb Pop or an Otter Pop in fifteen years. As an adult, I don’t eat many popsicles: they’re never in my freezer, they’re too messy, too many calories. A million reasons not to take a trip back to childhood.
Thank goodness Street Pops have given me a reason.
My main concern about popsicles is health: artificial flavors, HFCS– yuck. Streetpops are all natural, some of them vegan and some vegetarian (Sara Bornick, the owner, does “creamsicles” occasionally, thus rendering them not vegan). Streetpops are all-natural and come in kid-friendly flavors, like peanut butter and strawberry lemonade, as well as more adventurous ones, like chocolate-chili and cantaloupe-mint.
I made a deliberate attempt to try them at Second Sunday on Main. I knew I didn’t want to walk around with it, but that it would be lots of fun to eat on the way home. I chose Cantaloupe Mint, which sounded pretty refreshing (though for once, SSoM wasn’t ridiculously hot). It was– cool melon with fresh mint (that wasn’t overwhelming; in fact it was subtle, so subtle I almost mistook it for cilantro as it didn’t have that spearmint snap I was used to). It wasn’t too sweet; just as sweet as melon naturally is. I made the folks I was talking to jealous as I ate the pop. “Man, that looks good!” You can’t not eat a popsicle if you’re talking. Who wants it running down their arm?
Streetpops are $3 and can be found at many street festivals (Second Sunday on Main, Fountain Square, City Flea) and on the weekends at Findlay Market. Check their Facebook page for flavors.