Annual parade celebrates balloons

Thanksgiving is around the corner and that means the tradition of an amazing parade is near. Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is an exciting part of Thanksgiving day, but the fun actually begins before Thursday.

Because we love balloons, as do most of our readers, we thought we would share some information regarding this annual parade. Inflation begins the day before, on Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2019, right outside the Museum of National History in New York City. Macy’s offers the public a sneak peak of what will be seen during the parade.

Party & Halloween Retailer would love to share images you may take if you visit the 2019 inflation process or the parade itself. Feel free to tag us on social media or use the hashtag #partyandhalloweenretailer. 

Fun Parade Facts

(source: Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade)


  • 93 years of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade (est. 1924). Due to WWII, the parade was cancelled in 1942, 1943 and 1944
  • 3.5 million parade route spectators 
  • The parade route length is 2.5 miles —  77th & Central Park West south to 34th Street-Herald Square
  • 8,000 participants, including Macy’s colleagues and their friends and families, celebrities, recording artists, athletes, Broadway performers, marching bands, clowns, dancers, cheerleaders and other performance groups 


  • 16 giant character helium balloons 
  • 40 novelty, heritage, specialty balloons, balloonicles, balloonheads and trycaloons
  • New balloons – Astronaut Snoopy by Peanuts Worldwide, Green Eggs and Ham by Netflix, SpongeBob SquarePants & Gary by Nickelodeon, Smokey Bear by USDA Forest Service, and Love Flies Up to the Sky by Yayoi Kusama 
  • Diary of A Wimpy Kid is the tallest balloon at 62 feet 
  • Power Rangers Mighty Morphin Red Ranger is the longest balloon at 77 feet
  • Jett by Super Wings Width is the widest balloon measuring 39 feet 
  • More than 1,600 balloon handlers — there are 90 handlers on average per giant balloon


  • 26 floats comprised of hundreds of different set pieces and other structural elements 
  • New floats: Blue’s Clues & You! by Nickelodeon, The Brick-Changer by The LEGO Group, Home Sweet Home by Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Rexy in the City by COACH, and Toy House of Marvelous Milestones by New York Life 
  • Santa’s Sleigh is the largest float, measuring 60 feet long and 3.5 stories tall
  • 400 float escorts

The Broadcast

  • More than 50 million television viewers; it is one of the country’s most viewed televised events
  • Hours of Live Television – 3 hours from 9 a.m. until noon, in all time zones and 3 rebroadcast from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., in all time zones.
  • Years on NBC, official national broadcast partner – 66 (since 1952) 
  • NBC TODAY Show anchors as host of the Parade: 2019 marks Hoda Kotb’s 2nd year hosting; 2019 marks Savannah Guthrie’s 8th year (since 2012); 2019 marks Al Roker’s 25th year (since 1995)
  • Entertainment, Personalities and Performers
  • Marching Bands - 11 bands spanning approximately 2,793 members in total 
  • Performance Groups – 10 groups including 600 cheerleaders and 600 dancers from all over the country 
  • Radio City Rockettes – An annual favorite, they first performed in the 1957 Parade 
  • 4 Broadway musicals, the long-standing relationship with Broadway shows to showcase performances nationally, dating back to 1977 
  • 100 choral singers (Macy’s own) 
  • 1,000 clowns – 1,000
  • 22 clown stilt walker units
  • Santa Claus provides his famed Parade finale appearance and has closed the Macy’s Parade every year with the exception of 1933, the only year in which he led the official parade march 
  • Behind-the-scenes Magic by Macy’s Parade Studio Team
  • 50,000+ hours of labor from the parade studio team of approximately 27 painters, carpenters, animators, sculptors, welders, scenic/costume designers, electricians and engineers
  • Square Footage of the Parade Studio’s Moonachie, NJ headquarters – 72,000 
  • Length of Tubular Steel – nearly ½ mile for creation of the Macy’s Singing Tree, and the most steel ever sourced for a Macy’s Parade float 
  • 240 gallons of paint
  • 300 pounds of glitter
  • Paint Brushes – 75 fine art brushes + 300 additional types of brushes 
  • 4, 200 costumes 
  • 90 make-up artists for clowns 
  • 95 banner carriers

Originally posted Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2019

Tags: balloons