The 22nd Annual April Fools' Day Parade is today. Did you go? We hope not, because this is a long running joke itself. During its 15th year the press was fooled and showed up to find no parade. From the Museum of Hoaxes:
In 2000 a news release was sent to the media stating that the 15th annual New York City April Fool's Day Parade was scheduled to begin at noon on 59th Street and would proceed down to Fifth Avenue. According to the release, floats in the parade would include a "Beat 'em, Bust 'em, Book 'em" float created by the New York, Los Angeles, and Seattle police departments. This float would portray "themes of brutality, corruption and incompetence." A "Where's Mars?" float, reportedly built at a cost of $10 billion, would portray missed Mars missions. Finally, the "Atlanta Braves Baseball Tribute to Racism" float would feature John Rocker who would be "spewing racial epithets at the crowd." CNN and the Fox affiliate WNYW sent television news crews to cover the parade. They arrived at 59th Street at noon only to discover that there was no sign of a parade, at which point the reporters realized they had been hoaxed. The prank was the handiwork of Joey Skaggs, an experienced hoaxer. Skaggs had been issuing press releases advertising the nonexistent parade every April Fool's Day since 1986.
This years press release said the parade would go from 59th Street to Washington Square Park, beginning at noon. It goes on to say that the parade "will be led by Willie Nelson's tour bus with all the windows open to provide a free contact high to get revelers in the mood". The float list includes the King-of-the-Blow-Hards float "starring Donald Trump on a self-aggrandizing rant" and a tearful Miss USA Tara Conner polishing his shoes. On top of all that, free Taco Bell spinach, green onion & lettuce salads.
In other April Fools news past and present: Howard Stern faked his own demise on April 1st, 2004 in the midst of indecency hearings in Washington. Three years ago everyone thought Gmail was an April Fools Day prank! Google has a good history with fooling the public, here's this years prank. And finally, this year Britney Spears was crowned Most Foolish American, followed by Paris Hilton and George W. Bush.
Update: Some 2007 pranks are rolling in...
• Improv Everywhere tries to convince everyone that they're changing their name "due to legal action by a jazz combo from the 1980s. It seems said combo recorded and self-released three albums of improvisational jazz under the name 'Improv Everywhere' in 1983."