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National Pretzel Day

April 26, 2016

Where to get your FREE pretzel on National Pretzel Day:

Free pretzels all around on Tuesday.

Tuesday, April 26, is being celebrated as National Pretzel Day, the latest in a long line of marketing holidays featuring food giveaways. Here’s where to snag a free pretzel or, in one instance, a free cold beverage:
Auntie Anne’s Pretzels: Download the Auntie Anne’s rewards app by midnight on Monday, April 25, and you’ll get a reward redeemable for one free original or cinnamon sugar pretzel, valid from April 26 through May 1.
Ben’s Soft Pretzels: Donate at least $1 to the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund inside a participating Ben’s location and you’ll get a free pretzel on April 26.
Cumberland Farms: Purchase any hot pretzel at this convenience store chain on April 26, and you’ll get a free fountain or frozen Chill Zone beverage. The offer is valid from noon to 6 p.m. at participating Cumberland Farms in Florida and the Northeast.
Philly Pretzel Factory: This chain, based primarily in the Northeast, is giving away one free pretzel to each visitor at its 154 locations on April 26. In addition, the first 100 people in line at each store (excluding transportation and venue locations such as airports, train stations, zoos, and stadiums) will receive a card to redeem for one pretzel every day during the month of May.
Pretzelmaker: Any customer who spreads a message of kindness on social media and uses the hashtag #warmthoughts gets a free pretzel on April 26. Just show the message on your device in the store when placing an order.

History of the Pretzel –

National Pretzel Day is celebrated annually on April 26.  A bag of nice crunchy, salty pretzels or a big, warm, soft, cinnamon pretzel is the question of the day.  Either one is a great choice.

There are a few different accounts in the origin of the pretzel.  Most people agree that it does have a Christian background and they were invented by the monks.  According to The History of Science and Technology, in 610 AD, “an Italian monk invents pretzels as a reward to children who learn their prayers.  He calls the strips of baked dough, folded to resemble arms crossing the chest, “pretiola” (little rewards)”

Another source puts the invention in a monastery in southern France.  The looped pretzel may also be related to a Greek Ring bread from the communion bread used in monasteries a thousand years ago.  In the Catholic Church, pretzels had a religious significance for both ingredients and shape. The loops in pretzel may have served a practical purpose: bakers could hang them on sticks, projecting upwards from a central column, as shown in Job Berckheyde’s (1681) painting.

The Pennsylvania Dutch immigrants introduced pretzels to North America in the 19th century.  At this time many handmade pretzel bakeries populated central Pennsylvania and their popularity quickly spread.

It was in the 20th century that soft pretzels were very popular in areas such as Philadelphia, Chicago and New York. 

  • Today, the average Philadelphian consumes about twelve times as many pretzels as the national average.

  • Pennsylvania is the center of American pretzel production for both hard and soft pretzels, producing 80% of the nation’s pretzels.

  • The annual United States pretzel industry is worth over $550 million.

  • The average American consumes about 1.5 pounds of pretzels per year.

  • Philadelphia opened a privately run “Pretzel Museum” in 1993.

  • Hard pretzels originated in the United States in 1850.

OBSERVE

Following are a few “tried and true” recipes for you to enjoy:

Caramel Pretzel Brownies
Buttery Soft Pretzels
Jan’s Pretzel Dogs
Judy’s Strawberry Pretzel Salad

Use #NationalPretzelDay to post on social media.

HISTORY

National Pretzel Day, an “unofficial” National holiday began In 2003 when Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell declared April 26 “National Pretzel Day” to acknowledge the importance of the pretzel to the state’s history and economy.

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