Gumming up the Works

Bubba Gum spread


It comes and leaves about before you can even really blink. I’d argue it’s the very definition of ‘here today, gone tomorrow’.  I’ll stop beating around the bush and just say what I’m talking about here: Bubba gum handles.

They’re the type of thing that we can’t ever keep on hand. An order might come in and then be gone by the end of the month. Truth be told, sometimes I think they get sold out faster than even some of the exotic handles, which is crazy to think about.

I’ve had people ask before what started the craze, and figured I’d get an answer put forward here.

Back in 1998, it was a bit more of a risk to try something like that. Sure, you had some brighter blues and greens, but pink was very much uncharted territory on a knife.

At least until Randy Reid decided to pull the trigger and get an order wrote in with Case, the deal happening right in the middle of the Big Cedar Lodge in Branson, Missouri, with the order put down on a nearby napkin. A few months later, and the first market ready Trapper and Tiny Toothpick were put on the shelves, 500 produced in total, with 250 of them carrying the Lady Case design on the blade. It was clear soon enough that the handle was a winner; people were drawn to it like a moth to a light, which prompted the release of a Muskrat, Peanut and Canoe in the fall of that very same year.

Flash forward to 2023; going by how quickly the Small Congress Bubba Gum sold out when we received them in April, an interest in Bubba Gum is not a trend that’s fading anytime soon.