PEZ on Earth, Goodwill to Men, at PEZamania in Independence

Wed 7/19 @ 9AM-9PM

Thu 7/20 @ 9AM-9PM

Fri 7/21 @ 9AM-9PM

Sat 7/22 @ 9AM-11PM

Cleveland may never stop crowing about having the Rock Hall, but consider the even greater distinction: Independence has long hosted the 27-year-old PEZamania. This purports to be no less than the largest gathering of PEZ mint-candy dispenser enthusiasts, collectors and historians in North America — possibly even the world.

That’s saying something considering that PEZ candy hails from Austria (the name “pez” is a sort of takeoff on the German pronunciation for “peppermint”).

Who or what will be inducted into the 2017 PEZ likeness hall of fame? Will there really be an official Donald Trump PEZ (besides in the workshops and PhotoShops of satirical artists)? Is cherry PEZ really the only food you would eat the rest of your life if there had to be just one, like the kid said in Stand By Me?

PEZamania is probably the only place with answers (spoiler for Trump fans, PEZ waits years before issuing U.S. presidential commemoratives, usually in sets). There will be seminars (how to insure your PEZ collection), prizes, room parties, scavenger hunts, auctions, live entertainment and, of course, PEZ swaps/sales.

Deluxe admissions to the entire four-day event run $55 apiece (and the hotel is offering special room rates), via the website For those who just want to patronize dealers or partake of the fun on Friday and Saturday, door admission is $5 for individuals, $10 for families.

[Written by Charles Cassady Jr.]

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