Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade's Elf on the Shelf Balloon Has Social Media Terrified

The Elf on the Shelf may be a delightful holiday tradition in the home, but its float in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade certainly inspired some strong and fearful reactions on social media users, who noted the unusual position of the elf float as well as its "terrifying" countenance.

"Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! Except for the giant Elf on the Shelf balloon at the [Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade]," another wrote. "That thing is terrifying."

One user joked, "An Elf on the Shelf balloon. Because everyone wants his creepy face floating over their shoulder."

The Elf on the Shelf balloon might have been a little terrifying, but the origin of the hit holiday tradition goes back to stay-at-home mom Carol Aebersold and her adult twin daughters, Chanda Bell and Christa Pitts, who created a poem and doll in 2004 based on their own family traditions from the 1970s.

“We had an elf growing up for as long as we can remember. Our elf was named Fisbee, and Fisbee of course would report to Santa Claus at night and be back in a different position in our house the next day,” Pitts told the Huffington Post. “We loved it. It was a chance for us to tell Santa directly what maybe we might want for Christmas, or to do good deeds so that Santa would know about them.”

It clearly resonated with people, having sold millions of elves since its conception.

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“We’ve had quite a few people contact us and say excitedly, ‘I can’t believe it. Finally! This thing that we’ve been doing in our home for quite some time is available to everyone,’” Pitts added to the outlet.

Photo credit: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images