Thanksgiving Day Balloon Lineup

On November 26, The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade is coming down 7th Avenue to Herald Square (and a television near you). Fourteen larger-then-life character balloons are scheduled to appear, alongside proud marching bans, bedazzled dancing formations, and tacky floats ridden by teen stars you've never heard of, moving their freezing lips to songs they've come to hate. Can you tell which part I enjoy most?

The balloons are always a weird mix of cross-media superstars, hall-of-famers, commercial icons, and characters who can only be identified by the resident 7-year-old. But maybe that's part of the fun -- not just wondering what's floating up next, but exactly who they are and why they're still relevant.

From Abby Cadabby to Ronald McDonald, here's the 2009 balloon lineup in their relevant categories:

Abby Cadabby
Snoopy as The Flying Ace
Dora the Explorer

To 2008 and Behind!
Buzz Lightyear
Horton the Elephant

Not-So-Golden Oldies
"Sailor Mickey"
(Note, Epic Mickey would have made the top category)

Kids Only

And Now a Word From Our Balloons...
The Pillsbury Doughboy
Ronald McDonald
The Energizer Bunny

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