2018 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

The 2018 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade will be taking place on Thursday, November 22nd from 9am to 12pm.

The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is America’s oldest annual parade, with the first taking place in 1924. Nowadays, over 3 million people from across the nation and the world brave the cold weather every fall to catch the legendary balloons float above the city’s skyscrapers. For those who prefer to stay at home, NBC will broadcast the entire parade live so that nobody misses out on the fun.


The route offers 2.5 miles of prime viewing areas. The parade starts at 9am. It kicks off at 77th Street and Central Park West. The parade then heads South towards Columbus Circle. The stretch of blocks between 75th Street and 59th Street along Central Park West is a prime viewing area. Many early risers will camp out here to obtain first-row seats to the show. There’s also another good viewing spot at the Time Warner Center. The mall’s second floor is a great place to catch the parade from a unique point of view high above the ground.

The route then heads towards Central Park South. The parade proceeds to take a right turn towards 6th Avenue. This stretch of the route also offers prime viewing spots from 59th Street to 38th Street. However, keep in mind that the area between 34th and 38th streets and 34th Street between 6th and 7th avenue is restricted. This is where NBC broadcasts its special three-hour television special. The parade ends right by the Macy’s in Herald Square.

Balloons (some old favorites)

  • Charlie Brown
  • The Grinch
  • Ronald McDonald
  • Spongebob Squarepants
  • The Pillsbury Dough Boy
  • Pikachu

Pillsbury Doughboy Thanksgiving Day Parade


New Balloonicles

  • Go Bowling
  • Three Baby Dinos
Three Baby Dinos

Three Baby Dinos


New Floats

  • Chocolate Fantasy Factory
  • Santa’s Saint Bernards Save Christmas
  • Splashing Safari Adventure
  • Tom Turkey
Chocolate Fantasy Factory

Chocolate Fantasy Factory




Some balloon inflating action takes place the night before the parade from 3pm to 10pm. Inflation night has become somewhat of a ritual for New Yorkers and especially for many Upper West Siders. The event takes place by the American Museum of Natural History between West 77th Street and West 81st Street. Bring some hot cocoa with you and watch the balloons come alive as they soar up into the air.

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Featured image:  Anthony Quintano