Today on the tray: Rocky road

June 2 is National Rocky Road Day.

According to the holiday site Punchbowl, “In 1929 after the stock market crash, a man named William Dreyer (the founder of Dreyer Ice Cream) calmed his Black Thursday nerves by creating the original rocky road. He mixed chunky almonds, mini marshmallows, and delicious milk chocolate ice cream to create a new ice cream flavor that would make people smile despite the tough economic times.” (Dreyer, incidentally, hailed from the city in which I reside, Oakland, California; I live in the birthplace of rocky road!)

National Rocky Road Day is apparently intended to celebrate the ice cream flavor only. But why limit yourself? Other products also bear the name “rocky road”—such as rocky road fudge, Rocky Road candy bars, and, for a brief time in the 1980s, Rocky Road Cereal.

General Mills introduced the short-lived Rocky Road Cereal in 1986. In case “sweetened corn cereal with marshmallows covered with a chocolate-flavored coating and nuts” wasn’t enough to appeal to kids, the company also used a fun cartoon rock band to market it: Choco, a guitar-playing chocolate puff; Van, same thing, but vanilla; and singer Marsha Marshmallow. Marsha, Marsha, Marsha!

Rocky Road Cereal commercial (1980s)

If you still had a box of Rocky Road Cereal from the mid-’80s and opened it, what would it look like now? Well, Matt from the website Dinosaur Dracula wondered the same thing, and he found out. Watch him open it in the embedded video below. It beats watching Geraldo Rivera open Al Capone’s vault (an event that was broadcast live in 1986 — coincidentally, the same year that this box of cereal was manufactured).

Matt opens 26-year-old box of Rocky Road cereal.

And just because it would seem wrong not to include it, here is Weird Al Yankovic’s ode to rocky road ice cream, “I Love Rocky Road,” a parody of Joan Jett’s “I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll.”

Weird Al Yankovic, “I Love Rocky Road” (1983)

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