For the past 88 years, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has entertained over 50 million viewers on television and nearly four million spectators lining the streets of Manhattan. A vast array of balloons, floats, marching bands, celebrities and Broadway performances will march, float, ride and perform down two and a half miles through New York City.
Amy Kule, the executive producer of Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, will represent the Macy’s family as she cuts the parade ribbon to begin the events with 123 parade features following behind her.
There will be 16 balloons this year, including family favorites such as Spider-Man, Ronald McDonald, the Pillsbury Doughboy and SpongeBob SquarePants. Appearing for the 33rd time in the parade, more than any other balloon character, will be the Peanuts’ favorite duo, Snoopy and Woodstock.
Three Balloonicles (balloons with self-propelled vehicles), the Kool-Aid Man, Cloe the Holiday Clown and the Aflac duck, will be cruising through the streets of Manhattan in addition to 12 novelty balloons such as Macy’s Red Believe Stars, Harold the Policeman and Virginia, the star of Macy’s animated Christmas special, “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.”
Performances will include 12 marching bands from across the country, including the NYPD Marching Band along with those from various high schools, colleges and independent groups.
Broadway shows will also perform musical numbers from “A Gentlemen’s Guide to Love and Murder,” “Finding Neverland,” “The Last Ship,” “Side Show” and “On the Town.” During the parade, NBC will feature a sneak peek at the upcoming television musical “Peter Pan Live!” starring Allison Williams and Christopher Walken, airing on Dec. 4 at 8 p.m. on NBC.
Twenty musical guests are scheduled to sing including Kiss, Lucy Hale, MTKO, Meghan Trainer, Idina Menzel, Sting, Cole Swindell, Nick Jonas, Pentatonix and Hilary Duff.
Spirit of America Dance, Varsity Spirit Cheer, the Harlem Globetrotters and three other performance groups will dazzle audiences with choreographed dance routines.
Throughout the parade, there will be 27 floats including traditional favorites such as the Big Apple, 1-2-3 Sesame Street, Winter Wonderland in Central Park and Tom Turkey. To end the parade and to begin the Christmas season will be the grand finale, Santa’s Sleigh.
Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade will air Nov. 27 from 9 a.m. to noon on NBC.
Editor’s Note: Information from Macys.com/parade and Hypable.com was used in this article.