Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade: when it starts and how to watch

Let’s have a parade!

The 96th Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade returns Thursday with 16 giant character balloons and 28 floats, as well as artists like Paula Abdul, Sean Paul, Joss Stone and Dionne Warwick, marching in front of 3.5 million people in New York City — and on the screens by an estimated 50 million viewers outside of the Big Apple.

Here’s what you need to know about tuning to Macy’s M:
Parade in person – or watch from afar as you prepare your Thanksgiving turkey or hit the streets.

When does the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade start?

The Thanksgiving Parade begins on Thursday, Thanksgiving Day, at 9 a.m. EST. And the procession officially ends at noon EST.

Where can I watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade?

will air the parade beginning at 9 p.m. EST; Check your local listings.

Where to stream the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade?

Companion NBC and CBS streaming services — Peacock and Paramount+ — will also be broadcasting the parade live starting at 9:00 a.m. Streaming services like Hulu Live, Sling TV, DirecTV Stream, and YouTube TV also show the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Where is the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade route?

The parade begins at 77th Street and Central Park West in New York City (right between Central Park and the American Museum of Natural History). The procession then marches approximately three miles, honking its horns down Central Park West to Columbus Circle before turning onto Central Park South for a few blocks, turning right onto Sixth Avenue and continuing from 59th Street to 34th Street before merging in front of Macy’s, Herald Square ends on the Seventh Avenue side.

You can view a map of the parade route on the Macy’s Parade website, which also includes tips on where people coming to see the action in person can stand or take public transportation.

What is the largest balloon in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade?

The balloon, depicting Dragon Ball hero Goku, is 70 feet long, making it the longest balloon in the parade.

What’s new this year?

New balloons include Bluey, the lovable pup from the hit Australian children’s series (who, at 52ft, is as tall as a four-story building), as well as a new Diary of a Wimpy Kid balloon (beloved main character). Greg Heffley has been pictured in the parade before, but this is the first time his balloon’s brand new third edition has hit the streets). Also, for the first time, a Minion balloon (Stuart the Minion, to be precise) is taking part in the parade.

The new floats include a Toys “R” Us Geoffrey’s Dazzling Dance Party float, complete with a giant inflatable giraffe costume carried by two people, and a Baby Shark float, making its debut in the parade for caused a sensation.

A few more fun facts about this year’s parade:

More than 5,000 volunteers — including Macy’s employees and their friends and family, as well as national marching bands and celebrities — make up the parade.

Look out for more than 700 clowns, 16 giant character balloons, 28 floats, 12 marching bands, and 10 performance groups.

Parade costumes and floats feature 300 pounds of glitter.

Last but not least, the one and only Santa Claus anchors the parade.


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