Macy's Parade

By Dom Bewley

Thanksgiving is on the horizon. You can tell because every turkey is on edge. Crossing their claws that they'll be the ones pardoned by the President this year. Thanksgiving is a time to, well, give thanks. Thanks for what we have. It's a time to celebrate too. Unless you're a turkey. And if you're in new york and you're wondering how to spend your well-earned day off, why not go see Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade? And when it's over, why not check out Macy's department store. You can have 11% off your purchases, just from us.

Here's everything you could ever possibly need to know about it. You are very welcome. We'll start with a little history.

History of Macy's Parade

  • The parade started way back in 1924, when the world was black and white, if you believe your TV.
  • Over the last 95 years, the parade has gone from strength to strength.
  • In that time, the parade has only been called off three times. In 1942, 1943, and 1944 due to America's involvement in World War 2.
  • The event was first televised in 1939, and as of today attracts around 50 million TV viewers a year. That's a lot of ad revenue, folks!
  • Over 3.5 million people attend the event in person every year, to see over 8000 people, including celebrities and even some Macy's employees, take part.
  • Viewers will see over 4000 costumes, and the whole shebang takes up over 50,000 hours of labor to put together at Macy's Parade Studio.

Where is Macy's Parade?

The parade is held every year in New York City. Manhattan, to be exact. It starts at 77th Street and Central Park West, before making its way down to 34th Street and ending at Macy's Herald Square. Why not also check out some attractions you can get in nearby, completely free of charge? And don't forget, you can have 11% off your Macy's purchases with us.

When is Macy's Parade?

Why youngun, it's on Thanksgiving! That'd be November 28th for all you out-of-towners. Celebrations kick off at 9am sharp, and the parade usually ends at around 12:30pm. It's recommended that you get to the route at around 6am if you want a great spot to watch the proceedings. It might seem early, but you could always stop and get some coffee to perk you up beforehand!

What can I expect?

Lots of massive balloons along with 26 floats, broadway performances, marching bands, and a whole lotta good times.

Planning on going to Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade this year, or even taking part? Let us know what you're looking forward to most in the comments below.

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The Rockefeller Christmas Tree Lighting

Have you seen a big truck with a jolly, rosy-cheeked man on the side? The one with the big white beard? Perhaps you've seen him walking around New York. Maybe you've heard his dulcet tones on the radio. These days, he seems to promote everything. Some call him Chris Cringle. Some call him Santa Claus. Every year he brings joy to people little and large all over the world. Christmas is his time to shine. Every year he and his little friends work round the clock to make toys for boys and girls. It's true. And, well, when Santa starts popping up, you know the holidays are coming. And with them, a New York staple - the Rockefeller Christmas tree lighting. Read on, as we tell you absolutely, positively, every single thing you need to know about the Rockefeller Christmas Tree lighting. The first Rockefeller Christmas tree was erected in 1931, during the depression.Workers who were building the Rockefeller Center placed the 20ft tree and decorated it with cranberries, paper, and even tin cans. The following year, the tree became a Christmas tradition for the center. From 1932 to today, the Christmas tree has been lit every single year.Five years later, in 1936, the famed skating rink was first opened below the tree.2019's tree has been chosen. The lucky participant will be cut on November 7. It hails from Florida, New York, and will arrive at the Rockefeller Center on November 9.Where is the Rockefeller Christmas Tree Lighting? Unsurprisingly, it's at the Rockefeller Center. That's in Midtown Manhattan. Between 48th and 51st Streets. When is the Rockefeller Christmas Tree Lighting? This year, the tree will light up on Wednesday, December 4, between 8 - 10pm. Then, the lights will stay on until early January. And over Christmas Day, the lights will remain on for the whole day. That's 24 hours of Christmas goodness. With lights. Why should you go? Hey, where's your Christmas spirit?! In all seriousness, who wouldn't want to see more than 50,000 bulbs all light up at once on a giant Christmas tree? Plus, there's a huge Swarovski star on the top. Every year, thousands of people with Christmas fever line the streets to see the unveiling. And millions more watch it at home. But, why would you want to do that? Go outside, breathe in that sweet, crisp, Christmas air. Maybe grab a coffee to warm you on the inside. Just like Christmas does. Or if you're looking to warm your innards in a different way... And, once Christmas is over and it's time to take the tree down, they donate it to Habitat For Humanity. They're a charity that builds homes. So, the tree becomes the gift that keeps on giving. Isn't that nice?
Dom Bewley

Diwali New York: A Festival of Light

Have you experienced Diwali in New York yet? Many cultures have festivities that celebrate the triumph of light over dark, or good over evil. They’re especially prevalent this time of year, when the days get shorter and the sun seems to set at 3 PM. Coming up this week is Diwali in New York, which will see the city set aglow as a result of The Festival of Light. Keep reading for all the details on what it is and how to celebrate. So, what is Diwali? Diwali, sometimes known as Deepavali or Dipavali, is the five-day festival of lights; it celebrates the triumph of light over darkness. (The word ”diwali” comes from a word in Sanskrit meaning “rows of lighted lamps.”) It’s celebrated by religions around the world, including Hindus, Jains, Sikhs, and some Buddhists. While the different faiths celebrate different events and stories, they all celebrate knowledge over ignorance; good over evil. It celebrates the return of King Rama’s defeat of Ravana, a multi-headed demon king, by lighting clay lamps. The actual days are dictated by the Hindu lunar calendar; this year it’s being celebrated on Sunday, Oct. 27. How is Divali celebrated? You’ll often see temples, shops, and even office buildings lit up. The preparations and the festival itself can take up to five days. Tasks include cleaning and decorating homes, preparing a meal, exchanging gifts, and make offerings to Lakshmi, the goddess of prosperity. Celebrations often include worship ceremonies, religious rituals, meals, and sweets; you’ll also see firework displays, as well as Rangoli—patterns created on the floor, using colored powder or rice. What foods are eaten on Diwali? Sweets are very important on this holiday. Ones often eaten include Kheer (a kind of rice pudding, often flavored with cardamom, raisins, and nuts); gulab jamun (a sweet made primarily from milk solids); and Shankarpali (a kind of fried cookie). Yum. Are there any Diwali celebrations in New York? Yes! You can find Diwali celebrations throughout the city. October 27 from 6 -9 PM: The Bhakti Center (25 1st Avenue) will offer music and dance performances, henna and face painting booths, and food stalls. It will end with an offering of lamps. October 27: Staten Island Children’s Museum (1000 Richmond Terrace) will offer a celebration for all ages from 1–4 PM. Kids can make their own artwork using different colored sand. And if you just can’t get your act together this month, the celebrations extend until November—check out Camp Friendship’s in Brooklyn from 3:30 – 6 PM. October 25 from noon to 5 PM: Metropolitan Museum of Art (1000 Fifth Avenue) is offering World Culture Festival: Dance!. It celebrates cultures around the world, including The Colors of Krishna’s Love, a puppet show celebrating Diwali that will be offered three times throughout the afternoon. If you're not ready to leave behind the celebrations just yet, why not check out our blog on the Village Halloween Parade?
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