With over 36,000 restaurants in 100 countries worldwide, McDonald’s is a fast food restaurant that has touched millions of lives since it first opened in 1955. With its long history, McDonald’s has become firmly etched in international pop culture with their trademark burgers, chicken nuggets, sundaes, mascots, and the ultimate kids’ treat – the Happy Meal.
So on its 40th anniversary, McDonald’s is celebrating in a big way by bringing back the most popular Happy Meal toys!
For any kid, no trip to McDonald’s would be complete without a Happy Meal and the complementary toy. First introduced in 1979 as the Circus Wagon Happy Meal, early versions of the toys included spinning tops and erasers featuring McDonald’s characters. Forty years since, the Happy Meal toys have become a highly anticipated staple at McDonald’s, a testament to the fun and playful nature of the restaurant.
According to McDonald’s Chief Executive Officer Steve Easterbrook, “Since the Happy Meal was introduced on the menu, it quickly became synonymous with our brand. Today, this iconic red box creates lasting memories for billions of families annually across the world.”
Over the years, the Happy Meal toys have embraced all manner of children’s tiny pleasures, from the iconic Barbie dolls to various movie-themed merchandise. On the 40th anniversary of the first-ever Happy Meal, however, McDonald’s is about to prove that the toys are popular with children of all ages. From November 7–11, McDonald’s will be offering the Surprise Happy Meal, which will feature some of the best known Happy Meal Toys in the past four decades.
Colin Mitchell, McDonald’s Senior Vice President for Global Marketing, stated, “Parents tell us how fondly they recall their favorite toys. So, unboxing the Surprise Happy Meal together creates a real moment of bonding with their children. We hope these toys are something that they will treasure and remember.”
While the fast food giant may be criticized for luring children with toys to eat what many perceive as junk food, McDonald’s have made great strides in supporting the community and the environment and creating healthier options for its customers. Happy Meals do not include soda as a beverage, and in the U.S. the meals typically come with slices of fruit or yogurt and a beverage choice of milk, juice, or bottled water.
McDonald’s will also introduce a reduced-sugar low-fat chocolate milk in 2020. Since 2016, McDonald’s has also removed artificial preservatives, flavors, or colors from its chicken nuggets and classic burgers.
In addition to these better choices, in participating countries a portion of the income from the purchase of Happy Meals goes to Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) to help families in need. Established in 1974, RMHC has created 368 Ronald McDonald Houses, 252 Ronald McDonald Family Rooms, 50 Ronald McDonald Care Mobiles, and provided grants to non-profit organizations to help care for sick children and their families.
So treat yourself to a healthier Happy Meal and help others in the process! The roster of limited-edition toys includes some found across the glove, with two additional toys that can only be found in the United States. The 17 toys that comprise the official Surprise Happy Meal toys include:
This Surprise Happy Meal event is sure to bring squeals of delight and plenty of smiles to children and PARENTS alike! What used to be the exclusive feel good reward for children is sure to be an exceptional throwback moment for the older McDonald’s customer. These limited-edition toys are available only while supplies last, so be sure to head on to McDonald’s if you want to get your hands on that special toy!
See the video below to find your favorite Happy Meal toy!