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The story behind America’s suspicious free candy van

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The story behind America’s suspicious free candy van

FREE CANDY Van

FREE CANDY Van

Ron Jacobs

FREE CANDY Van

Ron Jacobs

Ron Jacobs

FREE CANDY Van

Ella Phelan-Burnett, Staff reporter

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A vintage van complete with blackened windows, no number plate and branded with ‘free candy’ in blood-red writing has been cruising around the streets of America giving out free candy.

It might sound the epitome of a parent’s nightmare, yet the menacing van contains nothing more harmless than a few extra trips to the dentist.

Perth hippy Ron Jacobs settled on the idea behind the van en-route to Burning Man festival this year; a stop before he headed off for three months of ‘wing suiting’, a sport where you fly wearing a suit that looks like an overgrown fruit bat.

Despite the media attention he received for the van, which wasn’t always positive, Ron assured sceptical onlookers that it was nothing more than a tribute to the Burning Man’s celebration of absurdism, and a product of his own unique humour.

“At the Burning Man it’s all about the giving, so what am I going to give?” he told ECU Daily.

“Oh and I’ve got to get to Burning Man. So I’ll need transport. I’ll also need somewhere to stay there … Okay, let’s connect all of these dots: FREE CANDY starts making a lot more sense.

“It’s just going to have to be completely over-the-top and really deliver on the promise of free candy at each and every opportunity.”

He said the  joy and delight I received driving others around, while handing out free sweets, was amazing.

“I get as many of my friends and their friends’ friends to drive around in it and give out free candy too,” he said.

“It’s such a blast. The sensation of being able to take someone from immediate shock-horror all the way through to gratitude and hilarity with a drizzle of irony in less than a second is outrageous fun in my book.”

The van made American news headlines, with some of the bold statements including: ‘Free Candy van creeps out parents in Sacramento’, and ‘Free Candy van upsets Sacramento residents’.

Luckily, these weren’t the only responses.

“I only ever heard the story from other peoples’ mouths,” Jacobs said.

“One interesting example was when one morning I woke up to a man shouting out at the top of his lungs at the van: “I saw you on the internet! F*** love your van!”.

So what’s next for the wing-suited, parent-creeping-out world traveller?

Best to keep in the loop via his Facebook page: facebook.com/ron.jacobs.146.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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About the Writer
Ella Phelan-Burnett, Student Broadcaster

Ella is studying a Double Major in Journalism and Broadcasting and aspires to one day work on breakfast television.

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The story behind America’s suspicious free candy van