Approximately three million spectators lined the sidewalks of the New York City Macy’s Thanksgiving day parade route on Thursday, November 26. The parade was without incident with the exception of a man flying a drone in Central Park along the parade route, who received a summons and released.
Increased security was visible along the 2.65-mile route with over 2500 police officers, about 500 counterterrorism officers, and NYPD helicopters patrolling the skies above. Bomb-sniffing and K-9 unit dogs patrolled as well. The added security didn’t dampen the spirits of the enthusiastic crowds as children shouted in delight when their favorite balloons, floats and celebrities passed by.
This year’s parade was the 89th anniversary of what is the largest Thanksgiving Day parade in the United States, and featured approximately 1000 clowns, 1500 dancers, twirlers, cheerleaders, dozens of marching bands, celebrities and almost 30 floats.
Mariah Carey and Pat Benatar drew loud cheers as they waved back to their fans. The parade is the unofficial start to the Christmas season after Santa arrives on his sleigh.