Cherry wriggles to victory in Jell-O Gallery Museum's debut virtual favorite flavor contest
Cherry bumped off Raspberry to win the first virtual poll of favorite flavors hosted by the world's only Jell-O Gallery Museum, located in Le Roy.
This year, 530 people picked a flavor they found most toothsome in honor of Le Roy's first celebration of National Jell-O Week.
The final tallies were totaled up on Saturday. And it was the votes counted last -- from fourth-graders at Wolcott Street School -- who shook things up.
There were 458 voters from 40 of the 50 U.S. states, including Hawaii. Missing were votes from: North and South Dakota, Idaho, Kentucky, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah and Wyoming. They also had voters in Canada, England, Italy and Scotland.
Then 72 fourth-grade students at Wolcott Street School weighed in with their choices.
Early results forecast Lime in a slight lead over Cherry, followed by third-place Raspberry. Then when the bulk of votes were added up, Raspberry was just jiggling past Lime -- 104 to 100.
Here are the tallies before and after the kids had their say (as denoted by the number after the addition sign):
- Cherry -- 93 + 20 = 113
- (tie) Raspberry -- 104 + 6 = 110
- (tie) Lime -- 100 + 10 = 110
- (tie) Orange -- 70 + 5 = 75
- (tie) Strawberry -- 61 + 14 = 75
- Lemon -- 13 + 1 = 14
- Black Cherry -- 11 + 1 = 12
- Grape -- 6 +13 = 19
- Watermelon -- 0 + 2 = 2
Lynne Belluscio, director of the Le Roy Historical Society, Village Historian, and museum director, was gobsmacked.
"Lime and Raspberry are now tied at 110!" she says, and then here comes "Cherry climbing to first at 113!"
Orange was out in front of Strawberry by one vote, now they, too, are tied for third-place honors at 75.
"It was too close to count," Belluscio said drolly. "Have had a demand for a recount. LOL."
(Couldn't hurt, right?)
Things got a little complicated when factoring in numerous "write-in ballots."
Some people couldn't choose just one and voted for “all.” Some people, likely contrarians, voted against a flavor -- Lime). Some people voted for pudding. (Jell-O makes pudding but it's not a gelatin dessert -- hello!)
Other flavors mentioned, honorable all (with the possible exception of Celery, of course), were:
- Strawberry Banana;
- Blue / Red;
- Sparkling White Grape (debuted in 1997);
- Celery (created in the 1960s);
- Black Currant from England although not a Jell-O brand.
So when adding on 31 votes for "random" flavors, pudding, votes for "all flavors," and even ballots cast stating "I hate jello" (sic), the total vote count was higher than the 530 votes for standard flavors.
In all 561 voters had their say.
Belluscio initiated the virtual voting campaign because the museum has been closed most of the past year due to COVID-19.
Thousands of visitors who would normally vote throughout the year could not do so, so she began accepting votes through different Facebook pages.
The polls remained open through Feb. 21, the last day of National Jell-O Week. Le Roy celebrated it for the first time this year -- and a week early at that.
And as always, people from all over voted, just as they do in person. In fact until 2020, the Gallery recorded votes with Zip Codes from all 50 states.
"So that is the count through Jell-O Week, but we will continue to take votes and zip codes through the year," Belluscio said. "We expect to reopen the last weekend in March and anticipate going to a Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday schedule in April.