Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City

To see more photos from the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, browse the location pages for Columbus Circle, Times Square, Herald Square, and the Macy’s Parade Balloon Inflation area.

The 86th Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade kicked off at 9:00AM EST this morning in Manhattan. Elaborate balloons, floats, falloons (float-based balloons) and balloonicles (self-powered balloon vehicles) snaked their way from 77th Street and Central Park West down 6th Avenue to Herald Square.

U.S. chain store Macy’s started the tradition in 1924. At the time, many of the department store’s employees were first-generation immigrants who were proud of their new American heritage and wanted to celebrate Thanksgiving with a festival similar to ones their parents had loved in Europe. At the end of that first parade, as has been the case with every parade since, Santa Claus arrives in Herald Square to ring in Christmas and the holiday season.