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Times Square Blog

Magical Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade

On Thursday, November 22, 2012 at 9 a.m., the magical Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade will begin. If you've never seen the parade in person, we strongly encourage you to do so. It's an unbelievable display of creativity that marks the start of the holiday season. The parade begins at 77th Street & Central Park West and ends at Macy's Herald Square. Here are a few fun Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade tid-bits:

  • The parade tradition started in 1924, making it one of the oldest Thanksgiving parades in the United States.
  • The first few years of the parade featured floats and bands, and also live animals loaned from the Central Park Zoo!
  • Large balloons replaced live animals in 1927; that's when Felix the Cat first made his appearance.
  • The famous holiday movie, Miracle on 34th Street, features actual footage of the 1946 parade.
  • The parade didn't take place from 1942-1944 because of the demands for rubber and helium for the war effort.

If you want an up-close and comfortable view of the parade, track down midtown hotels along the parade route. Hotel Mela is a Midtown hotel that offers a special parade package, "Thanksgiving Thrills." The special includes accommodations, turn-down service, a traditional breakfast for three, a thermos (including free refills of coco or coffee) and a 10% discount at Mela's fab French restaurant, Saju Bistro. Approximately 3 million people watch the parade in person; it's your turn to enjoy this American treat!