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The Faces of Dr Pepper – Donna Loren

August 8, 2014

Donna Loren at a carnival with a friendThe next group that worked on The Faces of Dr Pepper explored Donna Loren’s work for Dr Pepper in the 1960s. Erin, Laura, and Megan have this bit of information about Donna to share with you.

Donna Loren was a popular actress, singer, spokesperson and fashion icon during the sixties. She was the face of Dr Pepper, starred in several teen beach party films and was a guest star on the biggest shows during that era. Who is she? How did she go from nothing to everything almost overnight?

Loren was born in Massachusetts and raised in California. She began her singing career at age five when she placed second in an amateur talent show. At the age of eight she caught her first break singing in a commercial for Meadow Gold Ice Cream. Two years later she appeared on the Mickey Mouse Club TV Show. For the next few years she continued singing and recording, hoping to make it big. She even changed her name–her birth name was Donna Zukor, but she thought Donna Loren was a bit more catchy and likeable.

Donna Loren drinking Hot Dr Pepper with a friend.While attending Venice High School in western Los Angeles, Loren was picked up by Dr Pepper at the age of 16. The popular soft drink was a hit with the older generations from advertising campaigns like Peggy Pepper and Harmon the Caveman, but Dr Pepper was now looking to attract a younger crowd. Five foot two inch Donna Loren turned out to be the answer. In 1963 Dr Pepper held a national talent search for a teenage spokesperson, which Donna Loren won, becoming the first and only Dr Pepper girl ever to sign with Dr Pepper. Donna Loren was an instant sensation with the younger demographic, and sales spiked through the 60s after she signed to the company.

Donna Loren and Dick ClarkHer official launch with Dr Pepper was Dick Clark’s Dr Pepper Celebrity Party. It was an unusual party because it was broadcasted live, with many popular young actors and actresses of the time like Frankie Avalon, Annette Funicello, Dick and DeeDee, along with many others. The show attracted the younger age group that Dr Pepper was trying to reach, and turned Donna Loren into a star overnight.

Donna Loren drinking Dr Pepper at the beach with a friend.Loren’s commercials for
Dr Pepper were also a success. “It’s Dr Pepper Time!” was an instant hit and since she was matched with Harmon the Caveman, the commercials were popular with all ages of Dr Pepper fans.  Besides appearing on TV commercials, Loren also starred in several movies, like Muscle Beach Party with Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello, which also happened to be sponsored by Dr Pepper. Loren was the Dr Pepper spokesperson from 1963-1968, then retired from show business to raise a family.

Today, Loren is back to singing and recording. Since her divorce in the early eighties, Loren has appeared in several TV shows and released several albums, her most recent in 2010 called Love It Away.


The Dr Pepper Museum is located at 300 S. 5th Street in downtown Waco.  The Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM and Sunday from Noon until 5:00 PM, last ticket sold at 4:15.  For more information, visit us on the web at To purchase your own Dr Pepper memorabilia, visit the Museum’s online gift shop.

The Faces of Dr Pepper – Harmon the Caveman

July 11, 2014

Harmon invents Dr PepperFor The Faces of Dr Pepper exhibit, Margaret, Jordan, and Grace from the Exhibit Design class worked on Harmon the Caveman.  These cartoon advertisements for Dr Pepper were drawn by Johnny Hart, the creator of the B.C. comic strip.  Harmon and many of his friends may look familiar to those who have read B.C.  Here is what Margaret, Jordan, and Grace discovered about Johnny Hart.


Johnny HartJohn “Johnny” Lewis Hart, the man behind the “Harmon the Caveman” comic used in the Dr. Pepper campaign from 1962-1963, was born on February 18, 1931 in Endicott, New York.  From a very early age, Hart had a clear talent for drawing, as well as a hilarious sense of humor.  He graduated from high school in 1949 and began a career as a freelance comic illustrator with his high school friends, whose personalities and names gave birth to some of the characters in B.C.


The cast of BC comicsHe started out as a photographer and cartoonist for Robins Air Force Base in Georgia and continued to produce comic strips throughout his deployment in Korea for the newspaper “Pacific Stars and Stripes”.  It was after this, while he was working at General Electric in 1954, that Hart sold his first comic to the Saturday Evening Post, an act that started his propulsion into fame.  Some of his greatest influences were the artists Brant Parker (who later became the artist for the Wizard of Id comic strip with Hart writing it) and Charles Schulz (the artist behind Peanuts).  B.C. began running in 1958, with many of its characters based off Hart’s high school friends and some of his GE coworkers.  The incredibly successful comic is still in print today.  Johnny Hart passed away on April 7, 2007, leaving behind a legacy of fun and a comic strip that helped to mold the comic industry.


The Dr Pepper Museum is located at 300 S. 5th Street in downtown Waco.  The Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM and Sunday from Noon until 5:00 PM, last ticket sold at 4:15.  For more information, visit us on the web at To purchase your own Dr Pepper memorabilia, visit the Museum’s online gift shop.

Faces of Dr Pepper – Frosty Dog

June 30, 2014

Frosty Dog and pup beating the drum for Dr PepperThe next face of Dr Pepper from the Exhibit Design class’s exhibit that we take a look at is Frosty Dog.  Amy, Hannah, and Annie have this to say about Frosty Dog:

Have you ever seen one of Dr Pepper’s oldest mascots, Frosty Dog?  He was introduced in 1956 and stuck around until the early 1960s.  He was often caught saying frosty man, frosty! as he and Pup brought cold, delicious Dr Pepper to consumers.

Frosty Dog appeared in the Cotton Bowl parade in DallasDuring his time as the face of Dr Pepper, Frosty Dog appeared in a wide variety of different advertising. These included cartoons, signs, a dog naming contest, and even a float in the Annual Cotton Bowl Parade in Dallas.

Frosty Dog also got around quite a bit when his signs appeared on the syrup truck-trailers in Baltimore, Birmingham, and Dallas in May of 1959. These large rolling billboards traveled all across America boasting the frosty man, frosty! slogan and promoting “the awareness that Dr Pepper is ‘going places.’” These colorful baked enamel signs were great for advertising because they lasted a long time on the road and did not cost significantly more than the painted signs generally placed in grocery stores.

A rolling advertisment on the side of a Dr Pepper delivery truck

Frosty Dog goes on the roadThe Dr Pepper Company was not the only one who had the idea of taking Frosty on the road. Also in 1959 the R. J. Mealey Corporation created its own talking St. Bernard, which Richard Mealey himself strapped to the back of his station wagon and took off on an adventure. The R. J. Mealey Corporation, however, was not ground-breaking in its use of a talking Frosty dog; the original talking St. Bernard debuted at a Columbus, Mississippi plant in 1958. Regardless, this pooch, affectionately named the Happy Huckster, traveled an impressive 25,000 miles in his journey across eight western states to visit different Dr Pepper bottling plants.

Impressively the Happy Huckster didn’t have any trouble weathering the adverse climate conditions he encountered on his journey, including snow, rain, and dust. Ultimately the R. J. Mealey Corporation teamed up with the Dr Pepper Company and created several hundred Happy Hucksters for them to use at their own bottling sites. This promotion ended up being very good for business because the presence of these talking dogs often led to a two to three times increase in sales.

A Frosty Dr Pepper is known as a Frosty Pep!Although Frosty obviously enjoyed a great deal of success as a face of Dr Pepper during his time, his popularity reached its peak with the Name the Dog contest in the summer of 1959. While the Dr Pepper Company tried to incorporate Frosty Dog in their new direction with the introduction of the Frosty Pep, a float of vanilla ice cream drenched in Dr Pepper, they ultimately moved on to the It’s Different…I Like It campaign.

With warmer weather here, don’t forget this blast from the past and stay frosty man, frosty!


The Dr Pepper Museum is located at 300 S. 5th Street in downtown Waco.  The Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM and Sunday from Noon until 5:00 PM, last ticket sold at 4:15.  For more information, visit us on the web at To purchase your own Dr Pepper memorabilia, visit the Museum’s online gift shop.

Placing Soda in Movies

June 18, 2014

Soda Pop at the Movies exhibit logo
Have you ever watched a movie and noticed a movie character drinking your favorite soda pop or wearing your favorite clothing brand?  Marketers for brand name products and services are intentionally doing this to get recognition for their products.  Product placement makes prominent appearances in films, television programs and other entertainment productions.  Movies are popular forms of advertising and marketing for products because there is a built-in target audience.  Product marketers can choose exactly which type of crowd will be seeing their product used or appearing in a movie.

Wings, the first film with product placementOne of the first films to feature product placement was the 1927 silent film Wings, where a Hershey’s chocolate bar is eaten by one of the characters (Wings also won the first ever Academy Award for Best Picture). Product placement can be a very profitable investment for the product promoter. The appearance of Reese’s Pieces in E.T. increased Hershey’s profits by 65% following the release of the film in 1982. Toy Story’s inclusion of an Etch-A-Sketch boosted sales by an amazing 4,500%. Mr. Potato Head sales saw an 800% increase. 2013’s Man of Steel was branded as the movie with the most promotional partners ever. It’s been reported the producers signed more than 100 contracts with global marketing partners worth more than $160 million. Among them: Nokia, Sears, Lidl, Gillette, Hershey’s, Walmart and more.

Product placement also adds a bit of realism to a film, the old generic labels used in films of yesterday are now being replaced with authentic labels. Just imagine if Tom Hanks was talking to a generic brand volleyball instead of the Wilson brand used in the 2000 movie Castaway. It wouldn’t have the same heartfelt feeling unless he was yelling “Wilson!” as his friend floated away in the ocean. You can even purchase your own Wilson Castaway volleyball on the Wilson brand website.

To learn more about product placement, pop in to the Dr Pepper Museum for our latest exhibition, Soda Pop at the Movies and explore product placement and product promotion between soda pop and feature films.

Photograph from the Soda Pop at the Movies exhibitDifferent types of soda pop have been featured on-screen in a variety of movies, from the first notable on-screen appearance of Coca-Cola in King Kong (1933), to Pepsi in One, Two, Three (1961), and Dr Pepper in Muscle Beach Party (1964).  This family-friendly exhibit spans multiple movie genres, decades, and sodas, guaranteeing something for everyone.

Work up an appetite working the concession stand while learning about the Fountain Services Division of soft drink companies. Stand next to your favorite superheroes and their soft drinks of choice. Discover Dr Pepper Museum items loaned to big-budget films including Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008), Captain America: The First Avenger (2011), Thor (2011), and Dreamworks Studio’s 2005 film, The Prizewinner of Defiance, Ohio. Soft drink movie memorabilia including cans, bottles, posters, and more will be on display. Don’t miss the blockbuster exhibit of the summer!


The Dr Pepper Museum is located at 300 S. 5th Street in downtown Waco.  The Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM and Sunday from Noon until 5:00 PM, last ticket sold at 4:15.  For more information, visit us on the web at To purchase your own Dr Pepper memorabilia, visit the Museum’s online gift shop.

The Faces of Dr Pepper – Peggy Pepper

June 11, 2014

Exhibit Design 2014 studentsAs some of you know already, we partner with the Exhibit Design class in the Department of Museum Studies at Baylor University every year, so the students get a hands-on learning opportunity in exhibit design and development. This year’s class was given the topic of Dr Pepper spokespersons. They selected Peggy Pepper, Frosty Dog, Harmon, Donna Loren, and David Naughton to examine. They then picked objects from the Museum’s collection, the Dr Pepper Snapple Group collection, and from 2 generous Dr Pepper collectors. With these images they were able to focus on that spokesperson’s impact on Dr Pepper’s national advertising and product sales. Over the next months we will present a series of blog posts the students have developed about their particular spokesperson and some interesting things they learned along way about them. Thanks to these students for their hard work on this exhibit: Jennifer, Grace, Jordan, Laura, Wes, Erin, Margaret, Annie, Stephanie, Hannah, Becca, Megan, Amy, and Erik. We’ll start out with Erik, Wes, and Becca’s blog on Peggy Pepper.

Drink Dr Pepper, Energy Goes UP says Peggy PepperPretty Peggy Pepper was one of the early faces of Dr Pepper. Her entrance into the company’s advertising campaign took place in February 1941. Her image began with a patriotic theme and moved toward more athletic based ads showing her playing tennis, diving, or cheering on baseball player. These ads were featured in News and Views magazine along with her promotional themes “Swing Your Energy UP, Pick Your Energy UP, and Take Home a Carton.” In addition, she had her own cartoon strip featured in Sunday comics.

A Peggy Pepper comic strip from June 1941.

With the bombing of Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, marketing strategies changed and the company began to rethink how to incorporate Peggy Pepper with the war efforts. This was first seen in the February 1942 issue of News and Views, with Peggy handing a bottle of Dr Pepper to a soldier driving a jeep. The company’s support for war efforts also included a listing of Dr Pepper plants who were purchasing Defense Bonds and Stamps in the March issue of News and Views, as well as a general call for Americans to do the same. In addition, each issue featured a list of Dr Pepper employees who were serving in the war. This focus on the war effort was by no means unique in American advertising, but the level of involvement that Dr Pepper committed to things such as war bonds truly made the company stand out in their patriotism. Another interesting use of Peggy during the war was to encourage people to grow Victory Gardens so more food was available for the soldiers. This was an especially interesting find, and one that, in our minds, cemented Dr Pepper’s legacy as a great company.

Peggy PepperAlthough the war was still active, the rise in popularity of Western films being produced in Hollywood at the time led to a shift in advertising in the April 1942 issue of News and Views. Noted color photographer, Ivan Dimitri, was commissioned to take the Western themed photograph featuring Pretty Peggy Pepper handing a Dr Pepper to a cowboy riding a horse. The photograph was taken at the Deep Hollow Ranch, a 5,500 acre dude ranch on Long Island’s Montauk Point, about 100 miles from New York City. The cowboy was the foreman of the ranch and Peggy was featured wearing the patriotic attire that made her famous. While the photograph was not truly from the West, the advertisement made Dr Pepper a well-known trademark, once again.

Tank 020This Western theme did not last long, however, and neither did Pretty Peggy Pepper. The April issue of New and Views was the last time she would appear in a Dr Pepper advertisement. With the country still in the middle of a war in the South Pacific, the company decided to focus their ads primarily on war themes. As war production plants operated continuously, many bottle vendors provided soft drinks to workers regularly because research found that carbonated beverages were effective in boosting productivity. While Pretty Peggy Pepper’s short career only lasted fourteen months, Dr Pepper strongly believed in supporting the men and women at war and chose to display that support through their advertisements.


The Dr Pepper Museum is located at 300 S. 5th Street in downtown Waco.  The Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM and Sunday from Noon until 5:00 PM, last ticket sold at 4:15.  For more information, visit us on the web at To purchase your own Dr Pepper memorabilia, visit the Museum’s online gift shop.

Homes of Dr Pepper – 2nd Avenue

April 11, 2014

Exhibit title logo for the Homes of Dr Pepper exhibt at the Dr Pepper MuseumAs I mentioned before, we are going to be posting a few tidbits of fun information that we discovered while doing research for our most recent exhibit – Homes of Dr Pepper. The following quotes come from the Dr Pepper Bottlers Manual, 1933. At this time, Dr Pepper headquarters were located on 2nd Avenue in Dallas while the building the company had built in Waco as the Artesian Manufacturing and Bottling Company was operating strictly as a bottling plant for Dr Pepper. This book covered everything a Dr Pepper bottler needed to know to be a successful bottler. Lots of great information on the growth of the company during the late 1920s, what the Dr Pepper Company did to ensure that their syrup production was of the best quality, and what bottlers needed to do to ensure they were bottling the best product.

“Dr. Pepper grew from a single bottling plant operation developed by the parent company. This plant is located at Waco, Texas, and serves a territory of approximately 237,000. As far as we know, it has an unbroken earning record for 35 continuous years. During the past six years, after providing for Federal taxes, it has averaged $37,000 net income per year.”

Drink a Bite to Eat Ad from 1927“The present management took charge in 1925…Two years were spent setting the house in order for a new and more ambitious effort….When the stage was properly set in May 1927, the first advertising was released. It featured the energy value of Dr. Pepper. The thought was neatly summed up in a single sentence: “Drink a Bite to Eat At 10, 2, and 4 o’clock.” The first campaign was relatively small. Posters and newspapers were used Waco, Dallas, and Houston. The response was immediate. The sales gain for the year was spectacular. The whole industry became interested. Franchise applications from bottlers came unsolicited…From this point forward, progress was rapid. By the end of 1928, Texas was well covered with successful bottlers and syrup sales had increased nearly 600% over 1926. In rapid succession, during 1929, 1930, 1931, and 1932, distribution and bottling connections were extended into state after state. Today practically the solid South and parts of many adjoining states, a market of more than 40,000,000 people, is being served.”

Dr Pepper's location at 429 2nd Avenue in Dallas

Dallas company headquarters on 2nd Avenue

“By 1929, the growing demand for syrup made additional capacity a necessity. A new factory was built and equipped at Dallas. By 1931, expansion East of the Mississippi River demanded a factory closer to that market. A second modern plant was built at Birmingham. Both of these plants are considered models in their field and provide capacity to supply the growing demand of territories served for many years to come.”



Dr Pepper's syrup manufacturing facility in Birmingham, Alabama

Birmingham, Alabama syrup manufacturing facility for Dr Pepper

“Both the Dallas and Birmingham Dr. Pepper syrup factories are conceded to be the last word in efficiency and quality control. This is important to every Dr. Pepper bottler, since the precise flavor, purity and quality of the finished bottled product is primarily dependent upon the same qualities in the syrup.”

“Every step of the syrup manufacturing process; from the making of simple syrup (using specifically refined, pure-cane sugar and distilled water) to the mixing of purest flavor ingredients and the sealing in barrels, kegs, or jugs, is carried on with precision, accuracy and care. Every step of every process is guarded by the scientific eye and test-tube of our own laboratory.”

A map showing distribution of Dr Pepper syrup from the Dallas and Birmingham plants in the 1930s“A sample of every batch of syrup is tested for uniformity and exact density. These samples are kept for future reference…This system of test records permits positive check-up on any barrel, keg or jug of syrup, should one, at any time, be reported “off” flavor. It is a safeguard, which we rigidly maintain, though we have never had this occur. The same exacting control is practiced at the Birmingham plant.”


The bottling line at Dr. Pepper's facility at  429 Second Avenue in Dallas, Texas“There is no beverage quite so deliciously flavored, so delicate and distinctive in taste as Dr. Pepper when properly bottled…The requisites of a GOOD Dr. Pepper are as follows:
1. Suitable water.
2. One ounce of syrup to each bottle.
3. Carbonation of 3.5 volumes of carbon dioxide gas.
4. Filling point on bottles regulated to two inches from the top of the bottle at which point Dr. Pepper bottles contain 6 1/2 ounces.
5. Sanitary conditions which assure a product free from bacteria, yeast, or mold.”


The Dr Pepper Museum is located at 300 S. 5th Street in downtown Waco.  The Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM and Sunday from Noon until 5:00 PM, last ticket sold at 4:15.  For more information, visit us on the web at To purchase your own
Dr Pepper memorabilia, visit the Museum’s online gift shop.

Homes of Dr Pepper – The AMBC

February 26, 2014

Exhibit title logo for the Homes of Dr Pepper exhibt at the Dr Pepper MuseumLast week at the museum, we opened a new exhibit, The Homes of Dr Pepper.  This exhibition takes you on a historic journey to each one of these Homes of Dr Pepper. During its history, the company has been headquartered in SEVEN different locations in Texas starting with its cradle at the Old Corner Drugstore to an art deco icon in Dallas and grand corporate castle on Legacy Drive in Plano. As with most of our exhibits, we found so much more information about all these great places than what we could possibly share with you in one exhibit. So over the next few months, we’ll share some of it with you on our blog. Today we are starting not with its first home, the Old Corner Drugstore, but with its second home, the site built by the Artesian Manufacturing and Bottling Company in 1906, which is now our home, the Dr Pepper Museum.

With Wade Morrison as president, the Artesian Manufacturing and Bottling Company was formed to bottle and sell Dr Pepper and other soft drinks. After surveying several areas around Waco, property at the corner of 5th Street and Mary Avenue was purchased in 1905 and Milton Scott, a popular local architect, was brought on to design the state-of-the-art building that opened in 1906. The new facility housed bottling production, offices, and laboratories for the production of Dr Pepper and several other soft drinks including Circle A Ginger Ale. The Southern Carbonator and Bottler in September 1906 included an article on the facility along with floor plans. Here is the building’s description from then:

Floor plan for the first floor of the Artesian Manufacturing and Bottling Company building that was designed by Milton Scott“The building is 130 feet long and 50 feet wide, and consists of three stories, basement and boiler room. The boiler-room contains the boiler, engine and refrigerating machinery and electric dynamo. The basement is designed for the storage of heavy supplies, and is reached from the first floor by a stairway and basement elevator. The first story contains rooms for the clerical force, consisting of a private office, general office, toilet–room, lobby for the advertising room, and printing presses. The rear part of the first story is the bottling room proper, and contains machinery used in bottling.”

The floor plan for the second floor of the Artesian Manufacturing and Bottling Company that was designed by Milton Scott“The second story contains the working laboratory, private laboratory, and free clinical laboratory for physicians and apparatus and store-room.

The third story contains the distilling plant and sugar storage. A large power elevator carries supplies from the first story to the third.

The floor plan for the third floor of the Artesian Manufacturing and Bottling Company that was designed by Milton Scott.The basement, first floor and boiler-room have cement floors; the other floors are of slow-burning construction, and are made waterproof. A private spur connects with six different railroads.

There is a wharf on each side of the building, extending the full length, which provides ample facilities for the handling of freight.

The building is heated with waste steam and lighted by electricity from an electric plant installed in the building.

Ad from the 1906 Baylor Roundup for the Artesian Manufacturing and Bottling Company

An advertisement for the AMBC showcasing their new modern building from the 1906 Baylor Roundup. Image courtesy Baylor University Libraries Digital Collections.

The exterior of the building is of buff pressed brick, with stone trimming and red tile roof. The style of the building, in general, is Romanesque and was designed by Milton W. Scott, architect, Waco, Texas, with the view to making a model bottling establishment, and especially to be in keeping with the vim, vigor and vitality of Dr. Pepper and the snap and sparkle of Zu Zu Ginger Ale.

One feature is the gold and silver dome, which is quite an ‘eye catcher,’ and serves to fix the identity of the building with strangers. A special feature is a fine shower bath for the employees, a perfect sanitary arrangement everywhere in the building and on the grounds.”

Thanks to Baylor University Libraries Digital Collections for letting us showcase the fabulous AMBC ad from the 1906 Baylor Roundup. You can check out the other interesting items that they have by visiting


The Dr Pepper Museum is located at 300 S. 5th Street in downtown Waco. The Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM and Sunday from Noon until 5:00 PM, last ticket sold at 4:15. For more information, visit us on the web at To purchase your own
Dr Pepper memorabilia, visit the Museum’s online gift shop.


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