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Millions Come Out to Give Thanks

28 Nov

 

     IMG_3939     The unusually warm and calm weather was just perfect for the millions lined up on the parade route to see the popular huge balloons at the 89th annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Heightened security helped give the revelers from ages 1 to 99 a sense of comfort although some anxiety was evident when a FDNY truck blared their sirens to rush to an emergency away from the parade route. After that temporary interruption, there was no stopping the fun and excitement that comes along with best parade in the city. With over 50 million people watching worldwide, the fun was just getting started when newbie balloon Ice Age’s Scratch made his way down the parade route. The balloon handlers got the crowd worked up by starting a Scratch chant. One of the best things about this parade is the hundreds of clowns going around making people laugh and have a memorable experience. But what really sets this parade apart is the line up of great marching bands. Starting up the list of bands was the Stephen F. Austin marching band from Texas.

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      One of the largest balloons to make its appearance was the Diary of a Wimpy Kid balloon soon followed by the Cavalier Marching Band of the University of Virginia. Another of the larger balloons made all the kids gaze in amazement. The Red Power Ranger was greeted by the adoring crowd. Florida sent the Gulf Coast HS Shark MB from Naples. They were pretty good but they were just warming things up for the Munford HS MB from Tennessee. The NYPD sent their marching band preceding the Policeman float. I heard a few people giving thanks to the police officers for helping to keep them safe. With all the horrible events that recently happened in Paris, it’s a reminder the world can be a dangerous place at times. The police have a tough job and most times goes unappreciated…but not today. People gave thanks.  The international section was next with dancing groups from India and China waving to the crowd. Plenty of sea creatures were seen just before one of the more popular floats made its appearance…Spongebob Squarepants. Quite fitting was a big pirate ship followed by a retread of an older balloon..the pirate balloon. Even the big Red Angry Bird balloon couldn’t get this crowd upset. They were all about having fun. A really nice pairing was the FDNY Pipes and Drum band blaring their bagpipes ahead of the Fireman balloon.

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Saving the best marching bands for last were the North Hardin HS MB from Kentucky only to be outdone by the West Chester Golden Rams from Pennsylvania.  They had a good time working the crowd. The most energetic of all the bands has to go to The University of Illinois Marching Illini. They were amazing and the crowd showed their love and appreciation. Then all the Christmas themed floats appeared. All came by in anticipation of the Big Daddy himself…Santa Claus with Mrs. Claus and all their elf helpers. It was great to see all the kids smiling and waving to Santa. Before you know it Christmas will be here and it will be time for family, friends, and the joy the holiday brings. But for now, the crowd dispersed to their destination to enjoy a day of thanks, good food and good times.

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This was one of the best years for parades in NYC. Thousands of people came from all parts of the world to celebrate with NYers. Thanks to all the parade organizers and volunteers that made these parades so much fun to be a part of and record their history. Thanks to the NYPD for keeping everyone safe and clear of any danger. And thanks to you the reader for keeping this blog going. It has been an honor and privilege to be part of this endeavor. See you next year.

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