Join Club

Arlington Man’s Massive Pez Collection Started as a Bet

Mandrake Summers and his Pez collectionMandrake Summers didn’t set out to maintain a collection for 20 years when he  started a competition with his friend in his senior year of high school — in 1992 — to see who could collect the most Pez dispensers.

The Aurora Highlands resident, who has been working in Arlington County’s Department of Aging and Disability since 2009, has amassed a collection of well over 1,000 Pez dispensers at this point.

“Partly, it’s a compulsion,” admitted Summers. “I can’t walk into a store, see a Pez dispenser that I don’t have, and not buy it.”

Summers, 37, cites two key advantages to his Pez dispenser collection, as compared to other types of collectables: It takes up very little space, and Pez dispensers are easy to find.

“If I were collecting antique gliders, that would be very problematic,” said Summers, whose hobby also persisted when he stationed in the Ivory Coast for the Peace Corps in 2000.

“I would keep an eye out but my post was pretty rural,” said Summers. He caught up on his collection when he returned stateside.

While he has told his coworkers about his hobby, Summers surmises that if he has gotten any notoriety for it, it’s because he posts his new acquisitions on his Facebook page. One friend told us that he likes the posts because many of the photos bring back nostalgic childhood memories.

Summers owns a number of books on Pez that he uses as field guides, and he is part of an internet community of what he estimates to be approximately 100 or so forum members, who exchange information about new finds and reliable vendors.

Asked if he has any advice for would-be collectors, Summers said: “I guess I would say collect something that’s small because if you collect large items, they’ll quickly take over your house. Decide early on what you want to collect and sort of just commit to that.”

For those who take up Pez collections, Summers has more specific advice.

“My recommendation for anyone who’d want to start, is to go out to stores that are selling Pez dispensers and just buy as many different dispensers as you can, he said. “You can start there and within a few months you can probably get 30 or 40 dispensers without having to go on eBay.”

As for whether he developed a sweet tooth via his Pez collection, Summers says he doesn’t actually eat the candy — he gives it to his stepson.

Recent Stories

It has been an eventful couple of weeks for BMW drivers in the Crystal City and Pentagon City area. Last night another BMW was taken during a carjacking, by suspects…

There is a significant police presence at Wakefield High School this morning after a possible drug overdose.

One person was seriously injured and Bob & Edith’s Diner was damaged after two separate incidents of gunfire in Arlington last night.

Morning Notes

Rent Growth Slowed in 2022 — “Add together the past five years… and the Arlington apartment market has somewhat underperformed the nation as a whole, according to new data…  But…

Need help dealing with anxiety, depression or stress?

If you’re struggling to cope with anxiety, depression or stress, our virtual psychotherapy services can help. We offer a confidential and convenient service that’s tailored to your needs.

In our practice, cognitive behavioral therapy (or CBT) is an important tool we use to provide effective relief for those facing anxiety and depression. We believe that cognitive change can be used to improve behaviors and emotions, thus allowing you to achieve mental wellness. By understanding the cognitive distortions that lead to negative thought patterns, we are able to create interventions tailored to each of our clients. This empowering approach can help you gain control of how your own thoughts, beliefs, and behaviors impact your experience. With CBT, our service provides an effective treatment that can bring long-term change and mental stability.

Book a free consultation today and see how we can help you live a happier and healthier life.

Read More

Submit your own Announcement here.

St. Charles offers a play-based curriculum in a welcoming, Christ-centered environment.

Our program focuses on socio-emotional development and kindergarten readiness through hands-on and engaging activities. Our programs offer different schedules ranging from 7:30 am-5:30 pm for students, ages 2-5. We feature a full-day Jr. kindergarten class for older 4’s/5’s. Our facility includes a full-sized gymnasium, school chapel, and library. All of our students enjoy music and physical education weekly. Children have an opportunity to participate in enrichment classes such as soccer, basketball, ballet, and science.

We offer Summer Camp with weekly themes and twice a week water play, including Fun Friday moon bounce. Please join us for our Open House Feb. 3 at 9:30 am and 11:00 am. Click here to sign-up.

For more information or to schedule a tour, visit us at www.stcharlesarlington.org or call (703) 527-0608.

Submit your own Announcement here.

Almost, Maine

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, join us for a series of vignettes that revolve around the theme of love. Taking place in an almost-town called Almost, Maine, we will show you different, but important, facet of love in each

First-time Moms Meet & Greet

The truth, your first pregnancy and new mom months are full of twists and turns, ups and downs, and lots of questions! None of us really know the best way to do it – we just figure it out, together…

×

Subscribe to our mailing list