How The Thanksgiving Parade Started Returning To Normal After Covid

Kenneth Rosen, Head of Editorials

After a year filled with cancellations, classic traditions such as broadway shows started returning. Among these famous returning traditions, one stands above the others as an icon of New York and the holiday of Thanksgiving at large: The Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Last year the parade looked quite different as it was not visible to spectators and was much more empty because of it. To understand how the parade re-opened this year it is necessary to discuss the measures put into place last year. The first major difference was a complete lack of school bands and a drastic decrease in the number of balloon handlers to only 130. The second change, which is more noticeable if you actually tried to see the parade in person, was that no one was allowed to watch the parade at the normal distance to prevent crowds.

This year, to re-open the parade, these changes had to be undone. The number of balloon handlers were brought back and to a very impressive number of 4,500. The marching bands and spectators were also brought back; giving the parade it’s former energy back. Precautions are still being taken to try to limit the amount of covid cases, to highlight this, the actual inflation of the balloons was only open to those who are vaccinated.

This tradition, which is an important symbol of the holiday, has finally returned to its former glory and with it the connection the city lives on is starting to be brought back. Covid-19 is still a threat and the parade’s effects on cases remains to be seen but regardless, the parade’s restoration is a representation of the returning events to come.