Elmo has been one of the most popular muppets on Sesame Street since he made his debut. His red fur, slightly bulging eyes, and his falsetto voice are instantly recognized by any fan of the long-running and widely acclaimed TV show. His appeal is particularly noticeable among the toddler set, as well it should be; his character was written with them in mind. But that doesn’t mean that older children (and adults, too!) are not equally as besotted with this charming ball of fluff. When the “Tickle Me Elmo” plush toy was introduced, in 1996,it quickly became a fad of unbelievable moment. The doll's short supply, due to the unexpected demand, led to a secondary market where scalperswould sell the plush toy for hundreds of US dollars. Some instances of violence were reported over the limited stock amidst heavy consumer demand. PeopleMagazine reported that the toy, which retailed for $28.99, had been advertised in newspapers and the Internet for up to $1500 by the year's end. No surprise, there! In any case, here he is, all his glorious “cute-ness” intact, and ready to help some lucky youngster celebrate his birthday, in style!
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