When I was a kid, Elmo wasn’t even a primary character on Sesame Street — but I don’t hold his success since then against him (or call him “the red menace” as do some other Sesame Street purists). Indeed, if kids are still watching Sesame Street in 2015, I’m happy, whatever the reason!

Today is Elmo’s birthday — which is an odd concept for a Muppet who never really ages beyond three-and-a-half years old. Still, it’s an occasion of much celebration on the Sesame Street, and everyone’s turned up to wish him a happy one!