The Ubiquitous Hula Popper
Fred Arbogast did things a little differently than other lure manufactures. For one thing he quite commonly placed three or four ads in the same issue of a magazine. He also seemed to have been bitten by the urge to dream about Hawaii. Think about the many lure names that point to this. “Hawaiian this” and “Hula that” make up a good portion of the products introduced during Fred's lifetime. Doing things differently was also evident in the introduction of the Hula Popper. Almost without fail, the usual pattern for bait companies was to introduce a new bait casting lure and if it were a success, they would later introduce a flyrod-sized version. Not so with the Hula Popper. In the following ad from the April 1947 issue of Sports Afield we see that the Hula Popper was first introduced as a Flyrod lure.
The next year (1948) saw the introduction of a “new bait casting size Hula Popper”. The following full page advertisement from the March 1948 issue of Outdoor Life is a thing of beauty. Makes me want to go right out and buy one now.
The Hula Popper was a standard in the average tackle box from 30 or 40 years ago and still is today. I regularly run into folks that swear that the Hula Popper is their favorite surface lure and they assure me that they have taken many a bass on them. I have a secret to tell --- I bought my first one in 1957 and still haven't caught the first fish on it. Most of the time it does not make the cut and you will not find it in my tackle box. Obviously I am alone in this regard as everybody and their brother seems to have owned one and I never hear a bad word about the Hula Popper. LOL
-- Bill Sonnett