Peep fascination continues to spread

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    By Brittney McLaws

    They”re small, they”re cute, they”re sugar coated and come Easter, they”re everywhere. These fluffy little candies are taking over the world.

    The cultural fascination with Just Born”s Marshmallow Peep has infiltrated stores, Easter baskets, microwaves and the Internet. What is it about a sugarcoated marshmallow that has perhaps made a greater impact on the holiday than the Easter Bunny?

    According to the Just Born Web site, American consumed over 700 million Marshmallow Peeps last Easter. The reality is, however, not all of these fluffy treats are actually physically consumed.

    The fascination with Peeps has spawned an entire movement to experiment and explain these intriguing creatures.

    Web sites devoted to Peeps and their many uses litter the Internet. With the click of a button, Peeps fans can explore endless arrays of Peep parodies. One Web site, “Lord of the Peeps,” recreates the entire “Lord of the Rings” series with Peeps Bunnies. Additionally, fans can learn how to garden with Peeps, how to make a Peeps pizza or other fine delicacies, how to create delightful Peeps crafts and enjoy modern art created with Peeps.

    One Web site rearranges popular Monkees hits to incorporate Peeps such as “I”m a Peep-leaver,” sung to the hit, “I”m a Believer.” Still other Web sites are devoted to extensive scientific studies of Peep properties.

    Titled, “Those resilient little birds…” One tongue and cheek Web site tests for Peep”s tolerance to various temperatures, solubility and low-pressure environments.

    “As we plunge into the 21st century, it is time we take a closer look at the technological wonders we create,” states the theme and purpose of the Web site. “Here, we try to discover just a little bit more about the world around us through the miracles of science, technology and preservatives.”

    BYU students have also experimented with Peeps on various levels enjoying their quirky, candy personalities.

    Chelsea Hadley, a sophomore from Alpine said one of her Family Home Evenings at BYU was devoted to Peeps. For their activity, they competed to see whose Peep could get the largest in the microwave without actually blowing up.

    UVSC student, Emily Gibson also commemorated her love for peeps by hosting a Peeps roast to commemorate Easter.

    In addition to creative Peeps activities and spoofs, there are many people who are very particular about the way they enjoy their Peeps.

    In order to satisfy the demand for this marshmallow delicacy, Just Born expanded the Peeps line with year-round seasonal selections and currently produces over one billion candies a year. You can now find Peep ghosts, pumpkins, Christmas trees, and Valentine Hearts.

    To check out the Peeps Web sites visit: http://www.marshmallowpeeps.com/, http://www.peepresearch.org/, http://users.ids.net/~flamingo/mp.html, http://lordofthepeeps.com/.

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