The holidays are here and everyone knows the best way to kick off the season before the turkey even leaves the oven is a classic Thanksgiving Day Parade. Here are some of the best parades to check out around the country while you do your Thanksgiving travels this year.
1. Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade- New York, NY
Perhaps the most recognizable holiday celebration in the country, the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has been a New York City tradition since 1924! Featuring colorful floats, marching bands from around the country, iconic giant balloons, and, of course, the arrival of Santa Claus this event is a must see for anyone visiting New York for turkey day. While the parade is broadcast nationally at 9 a.m. on NBC visitors who want to get up early on the holiday can watch it live and in person along Central Park West from its kickoff point at 77th Street to 6th Avenue and along 6th Avenue to the Harold’s Square on 34th Street. It is advised that spectators arrive early (as early as 6 a.m.) to secure a good view of this beloved holiday spectacular. FAQs and detailed parade route information are available on Macy’s website.
2. Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade- Chicago, IL
The Midwest’s largest Thanksgiving Day Parade marches through the Windy City down State Street from Congress to Randolph starting at 8 a.m. “Grateful Hearts Gather” to watch dancers, bands, horses, and oversized balloons march alongside floats sponsored by the city’s businesses and community groups. This event is truly a heartwarming holiday treat, even in the city’s chilly November weather. Viewing the parade along State Street is free for all attendees, but VIP sponsorships are available to receive grandstand seating in the television broadcast area. VIP tickets are available online and cost $60 per adult. Children two and under can enter for free with a sponsor parent.
3. H-E-B Thanksgiving Day Parade- Houston, TX
2019 marks the 70th Annual Thanksgiving Day Parade in Houston! Celebrating the Houston community and the start of the holiday season, the annual event is put on by the Mayor’s Office of Special Events as the kickoff of the “Unwrap Downtown” holiday festival taking place throughout the city all Thanksgiving weekend. The parade is free for all attendees and will include live performances, over two dozen balloons and floats, and feature special guest appearances by the Voice’s Simone Gundy and, of course, Santa Claus! The parade kicks off at the corner of Lamar and Smith at 9 a.m. and circles around the city down Walker, Milam, Pease, and Louisiana Streets before ending back up at the corner of Clay and Smith. Plentiful seating is available along the route! Full parade information and limited premium seats are available at the
Houston city website.
4. Hollywood Christmas Parade- Los Angeles, CA
Not to be upstaged by New York, L.A. hosts its own holiday extravaganza during the weekend after Thanksgiving. Once all the turkey has been eaten and the rush of Black Friday shopping has calmed Los Angeles hosts its annual Hollywood Christmas parade, “the biggest Christmas Parade in America” on Sunday to kick off the season. Featuring an array of celebrity appearances and musical performances this night time event kicks off at 5 p.m. on Hollywood Boulevard and Orange Street before looping through the iconic Hollywood neighborhood down Vine Street and Sunset Boulevard. As if holiday music and giant balloons weren’t enough to spark the holiday spirit, the parade benefits the U.S. Marine Corp’s Toys for Tots program, which delivers millions of gifts to struggling families each holiday season. The parade is free to attend. More information and grandstand tickets are available online.