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Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade

November 4, 2015 | Events
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macy's thanksgiving day parade

Since its origin in 1924, the Macy’s Parade has marked the official start of the holiday season, introducing a cherished march of magic that has dazzled generations of fans. For the 89th edition, the famed spectacle’s line-up will feature 17 giant character balloons; 24 novelty/ornament balloons, balloonicles, and trycaloons; 27 floats; 1,100 cheerleaders and dancers; more than 1,000 clowns; 12 marching bands; a host of celebrity performers; and of course, the one-and-only Santa Claus.

Santa at Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade

Originally, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade was known as the Macy’s Christmas Parade and was started by a small group of Macy’s employees. The parade featured lions, bears, tigers, camels, goats, elephants, and donkey from the Central Park Zoo. 

Elephants in Macy's Parade

Fast forward and it is now the most spectacular holiday event in the world.  The parade features 8,000 volunteers and is watched live by 3.5 million people on the streets of Manhattan and another 50 million on TV.

The 2015 edition of the parade is sure to be a crowd pleaser featuring Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo, Mariah Carey, Dove Cameron and Sofia Carson, Cirque du Soleil® , Daughtry, Andra Day, Andy Grammer, Sandra Lee, Shawn Mendes, MercyMe, MIPSO, Miss America 2016 Betty Cantrell, Jennifer Nettles, NHL legends Mark and Marty Howe, Jake Owen, Panic! At the Disco, Plain White T’s, Rachel Platten, Questlove with the cast & the Muppets of Sesame Street® , Prince Royce, the cast of Broadway’s School of Rock, Trey Songz, Jordin Sparks, Chica and the gang from Sprout and Train.

Mount Rushmore Float

If you plan to watch live on the parade route you should arrive early…like 6:00 AM!  Camp out on Central Park West from 59th to 75th streets for the best view.  If you prefer to arrive later the best place to watch is further down the route on 6th Avenue.  

When the Parade is over and you have had your fill of turkey and stuffing, Macy’s stores are opening at 6:00 pm for the official start of the holiday shopping season. If you are in Manhattan, stop by Herald Square and pick up your Visitor Savings pass to save even more during Thanksgiving and Black Friday shopping. The Macy's Visitor Center at Herald Square is located on the Mezzanine Level of the store, up the steps from cosmetics. 

Enjoy the show and the shopping! 

Happy Thanksgiving!


About the Author

Meet Nancy Gallagher

Greetings from NYC! Nancy Gallagher is the Tourism Marketing Manager for Metro New York, including Herald Square, Brooklyn and Queens....