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Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Today Baskin-Robbins ice cream for $.31 each; History of Company

Well, today is your lucky day... if you can make it out to the Baskin-Robbins store located at 1201 S. Victory Blvd., Burbank, 91502 (you know the one with the drive-thru!), a treat is in store.

In celebration of the 75th anniversary of the beginning of the history of the ice cream stores that eventually became Baskin-Robbins, you can enjoy $.31 ice cream scoops and $1.31 root beer floats!

Company History (from company website)

In December 1945, seventy-five years ago, two brothers-in-law shared a dream to create an innovative ice cream store that would become world-famous Baskin-Robbins ice cream stores.

Burton "Burt" Baskin and Irvine "Irv" Robbins had a mutual love of old-fashioned ice cream and the desire to provide customers a variety of flavors made with ingredients of the highest quality in a fun, inviting atmosphere.

As a teen, Irv worked in his father's ice cream store. During World War II, Burt was a Lieutenant in the U.S. Navy and produced ice cream for his fellow troops. When the war was over, the two entrepreneurs were eager to capitalize on America's love of ice cream.

In 1945, Irv opened Snowbird Ice Cream in Glendale, California. His store featured 21 flavors and emphasized high-quality ice cream sold in a fun, personalized atmosphere. In 1946, Burt opened Burton's Ice Cream Shop in Pasadena, CA. By 1948, they had six stores between them. This concept eventually grew into Baskin-Robbins.

As the number of stores grew, Burt and Irv recognized that to maintain the high standards they set in the beginning, each store would require a manager who had an ownership interest in its overall operation. Even though they didn't realize it at the time, the two founders had pioneered the concept of franchising in the ice cream industry.

In 1949, there were more than 40 stores in Southern California when Burt and Irv purchased their first dairy in Burbank. This business decision allowed them to have complete control over the production of their ice cream, and the development of new ingredients and flavors.

It wasn’t until 1953 that the ice cream chain dropped the separate identities of Snowbird and Burton's and became Baskin-Robbins. A local advertising agency, Carson/Roberts, advised a uniform identity and image under the name Baskin-Robbins 31 Ice Cream. Their recommendations included the "31®" logo to represent a flavor for every day of the month, Cherry (pink) and Chocolate (brown) polka dots to be reminiscent of clowns, carnivals and fun and lastly, the use of cartoons to bring their flavors alive with personality to graphically highlight the name and delicious ingredients. With this over-arching branding, Baskin-Robbins' iconic pink spoons were created with the belief that people should be able to try any of their many flavors without cost.

Please send us a note about your favorite time and experience while ordering and enjoying a Baskin-Robbins ice cream cone.

If you have any Baskin-Robbins artifacts you would like to donate to The Museum, please contact Gary Fredburg, Chair, Artifacts Committee at 818-347-9665 or email him at

Enjoy your treat!

1 comment:

Unknown said...

I had an old girlfriend that worked at 31 flavors in Chatsworth. It was during high school and in the heat of the summer, myself and three friends would storm into the store seeking free ice cream cones.

My girlfriend was a good employee and, much to our chagrin, she would not let us have the free ice cream. For my birthday, to minimize the stampedes, she purchased a three gallon tub (the ones that employees scooped out of) for my birthday!

Four guys. Four spoons. Empty stomachs. Faraway dreams. I remember it taking forever to made a dent in that tub of ice cream.

Mike Stevens