This year, the procession is back in full force following two years of COVID limitations. The procession travels a distance of 2.5 miles from the Upper West Side to 34th Street.
Dressed and prepared for flight, Dino and Baby Dino are among the well-known balloon characters poised to float above the streets.
“We are here for the very first time to view the balloons,” said parade watcher Monica Debride. Born and bred in New York, I was delighted to bring my daughter for the first time.
Approximately 3 million spectators will witness 8,000 artists formally bring in the festive season. The fun began for many yesterday, as throngs gathered all day to watch the balloons rise.
“We were unaware of their size. “Now we see why they’re all tied down,” Florida tourist Cindy Mandat remarked.
This year, there will be sixteen enormous character balloons, twenty-eight floats, twelve marching bands, seven hundred clowns, and, of course, Santa Claus.
Alex Williams, a parade watcher, commented, “My favorite was probably ‘The Diary of a Wimpy Kid’.”
After two recent horrific shootings in Virginia and Colorado, the New York Authorities Department is increasing security for the Christmas parade as a precaution, but police insist there is no genuine danger to the celebrations.
“There will be cops you see and officers you don’t see,” stated Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell. “We are currently airborne. We are present among the throng. We are located along the path. We are here to ensure your safety.”
The Minions, Papa Smurf, and Diary of a Wimpy Kid are among the large balloons that fans will be watching for. In addition, there will be performances and appearances by Paula Abdul, Kirk Franklin, and Funny Girl from Broadway.
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