History with the Macy's Parade
Toni, the Bandleader Bear struck up the band for the very first time in the 2021 Macy's Parade, showing everyone how to march to the beat of their own drum. Named after legendary Parade pioneer Tony Sarg, Toni saluted to the many spectators lining the streets of New York City as he soared above the Parade route as the ambassador of the Parade's marching band program.
The beary big balloon was designed, built and painted entirely in-house by the incredibly talented Macy's Studio team. Its designer, Joey Ammons, said that when designing Toni, he wanted to "pursue a design that celebrated our retro aesthetic with a modern twist".
Prior to the balloon's full design being revealed, his head was seen in the Balloon Studio of Macy's Parade Studio, serving as a backdrop for virtual announcements with Wesley Whatley inviting marching bands to perform in the 2022 Parade.