After 50 years of helping pretty much every child ever have a little more “nice” in their lives, Sesame Street‘s Big Bird – or the man inside him, Carroll Spinney – is preparing to retire.

Spinney, who also gives life to Oscar the Grouch, has announced that he’ll be handing over the feathers and trash can following Sesame Street‘s 50th anniversary next year. The man – and legend – is currently 84.

The tribute below features some wonderful moments, including glimpses at the pilot where Oscar was orange. Maybe Ernie threatened to sue him for colour infringement?

Anyway, as kids who delighted in singing along to the likes of ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ and pre-punk anthem I Love Trash, we’d like to thank Carroll and wish him all the best in retirement.

Still here? How about a couple of singalongs?

Visit Sesame Street at JB Hi-Fi.