To celebrate the Big MacÃ¢ÂÂs 50th anniversary, you'll get a MacCoin when you buy a Big Mac. USA TODAY
It's not exactly pennies from heaven, but McDonaldÃ¢ÂÂs is planning to make it rainÃÂ coins to celebrate the Big MacÃ¢ÂÂs 50th anniversary.
Starting at the lunch rush on Thursday, customers can receive a MacCoin with the purchase of a Big Mac at 14,000 participating restaurants across the United States, McDonald's announced Sunday.ÃÂ
And what's the coin good for? Another Big Mac.
Customers can redeem the new currency for a free Big Mac starting FridayÃÂ and running throughout the rest of 2018.
In an Interview with USA TODAY, McDonald's CEO Steve Easterbrook explained Thursday was selected as the release date for the brass-colored coinsÃÂ because it wouldÃ¢ÂÂve been the 100th birthday of Jim Delligatti, a McDonaldÃ¢ÂÂs franchisee in western Pennsylvania who invented the Big Mac.
The coin idea sprung from the role that the Big Mac has played in measuring purchasing power.
In 1986, The Economist started using the Big Mac Index as a way of measuring the purchasing power of international currency. "They use it to this day,Ã¢ÂÂ Easterbrook said. Ã¢ÂÂWhy not have some fun with it? Create our own currency.Ã¢ÂÂ
The Big Mac has become an American icon over its 50-year run. In 2007, the Big Mac Museum Restaurant was established in North Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, to honor the juicy burger. ItsÃÂ Big Mac sculpture is 14 feet tall and 12 feet in diameter.
And in 2016, McDonaldÃ¢ÂÂs division in the United Kingdom auctioned off a 740-milliliter bottle of sauce used in the burger for roughly $95,000 on eBay.
McDonaldÃ¢ÂÂs sold 1.3 billion Big Macs last year, according to the chain.
MacCoins will feature five unique designs, each representing a decade of the Big Mac. TheÃÂ highlights:
Ã¢ÂÂ¢The Ã¢ÂÂ70s: Showcasing the decadeÃ¢ÂÂs flower power
Ã¢ÂÂ¢The Ã¢ÂÂ80s:ÃÂ Alluding to pop art
Ã¢ÂÂ¢The Ã¢ÂÂ90s:ÃÂ Defined by bold, abstract shapes
Ã¢ÂÂ¢The early Ã¢ÂÂ00s: Specifically focusing on the technology that was at the forefront of the turn of the century
Ã¢ÂÂ¢The Ã¢ÂÂ10s: MacCoin calling attention to the evolution of communication
Follow USA TODAY intern Ben TobinÃÂ on Twitter: @TobinBen
Despite McDonaldÃ¢ÂÂs offering healthier options, itÃ¢ÂÂs signature menu items are higher in salt, calories and sugar than they were 30 years ago, according to a report. Buzz 60's Chandra Lanier has the story. Buzz60