Ronald McDonald is a clown character used as the primary mascot of the McDonald's fast-food restaurant chain. In television commercials, he once inhabited a fantasy world called "McDonaldland," having adventures with friends like Birdie the Early Bird, the Hamburglar, Grimace, Mayor McCheese, and the Fry Kids. But since McDonaldland has been phased out, Ronald now interacts with children in their everyday lives. He also visits children in hospitals and attends regular events.

History with the Macy's Parade

Ronald McDonald was introduced to the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in 1987. In his first version, he was upside down and held balloons. This balloon retired in 1990, but reappeared in 1993 and 1994. In those parades, he led a marching band of clowns.

Ronald reappeared in 2000 with a brand new balloon, giving him a more traditional look. This one appeared until 2008. In 2001, this Ronald balloon had his left arm shredded after colliding with a tree. When Ronald returned to the parade, a big red shoe car accompanied him, in which he appeared as a walkaround character. Originally he was accompanied by some of his McDonaldland friends, but as that world was phased out, Ronald was accompanied instead by the McKids from 2006 onwards.

In 2009, a new Ronald balloon was made, in which he is shown wearing a scarf and ice skates. This Ronald balloon was retired in 2014. The character's current balloon, launched in 2015, portrays him in one of the new costumes introduced after his traditional outfit was retired.


In 2001, Ronald's right arm ripped and deflated after crashing into a Central Park tree.

In 2011, Ronald's left ice skate deflated due to heavy winds.

In 2012, Ronald was caught in a tree,causing his hair to deflate, but still appeared though.


  • Ronald with Balloons (1987-1990, 1993-1994)
  • Traditional Ronald (2000-2008)
  • Ice Skating Ronald (2009-2014)
  • Circus Ronald (2015-Present)

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