Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade Will Be LIVE from New York This Year

It's back to normal for the Macy's parade—well, almost.

The holidays are coming up quick, and that’s OK with us. We’re definitely looking forward to holiday cheer this year, and for many, that cheer arrives in the form of family traditions—like watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade before your feast.

Like everything from shopping to eating at restaurants, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade had to change because of COVID-19 last year. No live spectators were allowed, the parade was scaled back and the route was changed. Most of the event was pre-recorded Even the balloons were anchored to cars instead of being held by people.

This year, with things opening up, the parade is going back to normal—well, almost. There will still be some precautions, but it’s going to look a lot more like the parade you remember from years before 2020.

How Will the Macy’s Parade Look This Year?

For starters, the parade will follow its usual route! The crowds will be back this year, but within reason. New York City is set to manage public viewing locations and safety procedures along designated portions of the route, and access will be closely monitored.

The number of people in the parade will still be reduced—the overall number is currently set to be 10-20% of the usual participants, or approximately 800-1600 people—and everyone will need to be vaccinated, with only a handful of exceptions.

The parade will feature all of the usual Macy’s icons: giant character balloons, floats, marching bands, performance groups and, of course, Santa Claus!

How Can I Watch the Parade?

If this is your annual Thanksgiving tradition, tune in to NBC on Thanksgiving Day, which is Thursday, November 25. The parade starts at 9 a.m. in all time zones and runs till noon, so you can watch it right before tucking into your Thanksgiving spread!

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Snacks to Munch on During the Parade
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Emily Hannemann
Emily adores both food and writing, so combining those passions as a writer for Taste of Home makes perfect sense. Her work has also appeared in Birds & Blooms and on TV Insider. When she’s not eating peanut butter straight from the jar, you'll find her running or birdwatching. Emily is currently a journalism graduate student at the University of Missouri.