Here is the lineup used for the 71st Annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, which took place in 1997.


Despite Macy's frantic attempts to make the 71st Macy's Parade a spectacle for all, it didn't go according to plan. Winds this year proved to be absolutely insane at 45 miles per hour, so it was going to be very hard for the handlers to keep things under control. New balloons included Arthur Read, the star of the book series and then-recent TV program; Tommy, Chuckie and Spike from Rugrats; Bumpé, the protagonist of the Swedish book Bumpé ABC; and original creation Petula Pig. Alongside them would be fellow balloons Garfield, Barney the Dinosaur, Big Bird, Spider-Man, and The Pink Panther. Liz Callaway, Andy Richter, the Sesame Street Muppets, and more would also join in and perform on their floats. However, the most notable part of the parade would be the oversized Cat in the Hat balloon, who caused an accident so horrible and infamous it led to tighter rules the following year. Many other balloons bit the dust this year, with only a few making it through. Santa Claus, as usual, would end things off to begin the Christmas season. 


Bold indicates a new balloon.

  • Arthur (Random House Children's Media Group) - 1st time
  • Big Bird (Children's Television Workshop) - 10th time
  • Garfield (Paws, Inc.) - 12th time
  • Peter Rabbit (Beatrix Potter & Co.) - 2nd time
  • Pink Panther (MGM) (Removed from Parade/Retired) - 10th and last time
  • Quik Bunny (Nestlé) (Removed from Parade) - 10th time
  • Barney (Lyrick Studios) (Removed from Parade) - 4th time
  • Sonic the Hedgehog (Sega of America, Inc.) (Removed from Parade/Retired) - 5th and last time
  • Rugrats (Nickelodeon) - 1st time
  • The Cat in the Hat (Esprit de Corp) (Removed from Parade/Retired) - 4th and last time
  • Spider-Man (Marvel Entertainment Group, Inc.) - 11th time
  • Bumpé (Skandiiplaay, LTD.) - 1st and only time
  • Eben Bear (Macy's) (Removed due to an accident) - 3rd time
  • Ms. Petula Pig (Macy's) (Removed due to an accident/Retired) - 1st time

Novelty Balloons



Toy Floats

  • Rocking Tortoise
  • Rocking Hare
  • Rocking Snail
  • Mother Duck
  • Rocking Lobster
  • Rocking Horse
  • Banana Split - 2nd time

Clown Cars

  • Firetruck
  • Produce Truck

Specialty Floats

  • Circus Wagon

Push Floats

  • Pilgrim Man & Pilgrim Woman

Guest Stars

  • Kristian Alfonso
  • Marc Anthony
  • Backstreet Boys; performed "As Long As You Love Me", with choreography by Hip Hop Kidz
  • The Cast of Sesame Street: Big Bird's Nest: Big Bird, Ernie, Bert and Prairie Dawn, Windows: (Top: Zoe, Rostia, Middle: Count Von Count, Grundgetta, Cookie Monster, Baby Bear, Bottom: Betty Lou, Grover), Oscar's Trash Can: Oscar the Grouch, On the Floor: Alice Snufflepagus, Bob, Gordon, Susan, Maria, Luis, Mr. Handford, Ruthie, Carlo, Celina, Gina, Miles, Gabi, Linda, and the Kids
  • Elmo (Interview with Katie Couric)
  • Joseph Barbara
  • Liz Callaway
  • Michael Cerveris
  • Victoria Clark
  • Clive Robertson
  • The Cast of The Sound of Music
  • Brian d'Arcy James
  • Alice in Wonderland
  • Andy Richter
  • Cathy Rigby
  • Linda Dano
  • M&M's: Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, and Blue
  • Teresa Weatherspoon
  • Stacy Francis
  • Debbie Gibson, performed "Only In My Dreams (remix)"
  • Darrell Hammond
  • Kye Hampton
  • Barney and Friends: Barney, BJ and Baby Bop
  • Marilu Henner
  • Emily Skinner
  • Susan Ward
  • Wynonna Judd
  • Sheri Lewis, Lamb Chop, and Charlie the Horse
  • Vicki Lewis
  • Hal Liden
  • Alice Ripley
  • Jose Llana
  • Rebecca Luker
  • Beth Nielsen Chapman
  • Josh Tesh
  • Anastasia: Anastasia Nikolaevna, Dimitri, Bartok, and Vladimir (To Promote Anastasia)
  • Connie Sellecca
  • James Naughton
  • The Radio City Rockettes
  • Tim McGrawl; sang "Where the Green Grass Grows"
  • Joseph Mascolo
  • Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen
  • Randy Travis

Performance Groups

  • America Sings
  • Mike Miller Dance Team
  • NCA Cheerleaders
  • Heartland Hoedowners

Marching Bands

  • Butler High School Marching Band
  • North Hagerstown High School Marching Band
  • Concord High School Marching Band
  • Miami Central High School Marching Band
  • Pinson Valley High School Marching Band
  • Allen Eagle High School Marching Band
  • Trumbull High School Marching Band
  • Jones Jr. College Marching Band
  • Westwood High School Marching Band
  • Port Chester High School Marching Band
  • Monache High School Marching Band
  • NYPD Marching Band
  • SW Dekalb High School Marching Band
  • Parkway Central High School Marching Band


See here


  • After the events of the “Great Balloon Massacre” of 1997, new safety restrictions were introduced in order to attempt to prevent balloon incidents from occurring often, if not to eliminate the possibility of them altogether. Starting in 1998, the giant character balloons would now be attached to two utility tractors, and are no longer allowed to exceed 70 feet in height, 78 feet in length, or 40 feet in width. This meant that the oversized balloons — including Bugs Bunny, The Pink Panther, Rex the Dinosaur, Woody Woodpecker, and Bart Simpson — had to be permanently banned from making any future reappearances. Any balloon that wasn’t built for the utility vehicles also had to be permanently banned, including Sonic the Hedgehog and SkyDancer. In 2005, after another serious incident occurred, more safety restrictions were introduced, such as installing wind measurement devices that alert Parade organizers to unsafe weather, flying balloons lower than usual during windy conditions, and prohibiting balloons from flying altogether during very heavy rainfall, sustained winds of 23 miles per hour, or wind gusts of 34 miles per hour.
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