After wind scare, balloons fly in Macy’s Thanksgiving parade

The beloved balloons flew, if lower than usual, as the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade rolled on after an anxious weather watch Thursday.

News 12 Staff

Nov 28, 2019, 10:14 AM

Updated 1,644 days ago

Share:

(AP) - The beloved balloons flew, if lower than usual, as the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade rolled on after an anxious weather watch Thursday.

Astronaut Snoopy, a new version of a longtime parade favorite, was among the giant inflated characters leading the lineup.
Joanna Mammen and her family came from Bradford County in northern Pennsylvania to revisit the parade she attended every year - rain, shine or wind - as a girl growing up in the Bronx.

“My favorite float, as a kid, was Santa Claus,” said Mammen, 69. “Most of the other floats from that time, the kids these days wouldn’t even recognize. But it’s a beautiful tradition, to come out and experience the crowd.”
It was a first-time experience for her husband, Bill. And for him, it was all about sharing the fun the couple’s son, Jason, and 2-year-old grandson, Lincoln.

“Thanksgiving is not just about the people I love. It is the people I love,” he said.

Spectators lined up a half-dozen deep along the route on a breezy but beautiful fall day, with leaves and confetti swirling in the wind.
 

Parade officials and the NYPD had been keeping an eye on wind gauges along the 2.5-mile parade route that snakes through Manhattan.

The National Weather Service had projected sustained winds of up to 24 mph with gusts to 40 mph during the parade.

City rules require balloons to be grounded if sustained winds exceed 23 mph and gusts exceed 34 mph. The balloons have been grounded only once for weather-related reasons, in 1971.

On Thursday, Macy’s Vice President Susan Tercero made an announcement a half-hour before the parade started that the balloons would fly, albeit at a lower level.

The parade, one of the city’s most popular events, features about 8,000 marchers, two dozen floats and marching bands, ending with an appearance from Santa Claus.

Among the performers scheduled for this year were actor Billy Porter of “Pose,” and singers Celine Dion, Ciara, Kelly Rowland and Idina Menzel.

The character balloons can go as high as 55 feet off the ground and as low as 10 feet.

The rules requiring them to be grounded in high-wind conditions came after wind blew a “Cat in the Hat” balloon into a lamppost near Central Park in 1997, critically injuring a woman.

In 2005, eight years after the “Cat and the Hat” went off course, an M&M’s balloon smacked into a lamppost in Times Square, causing cuts and bruises to a woman in a wheelchair and her 11-year-old sister.

In 2017, a gust on an otherwise calm day sent a smaller balloon into a tree branch. That one popped and fell harmlessly onto the crowd.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


More from News 12
2:07
Monmouth County police patrols to crack down on distracted driving

Monmouth County police patrols to crack down on distracted driving

1:33
Stormy weather lingers into Thursday morning; sun returns for afternoon

Stormy weather lingers into Thursday morning; sun returns for afternoon

2:08
‘We can’t wait for a catastrophe.’ Officials call for greater consequences for rowdy teens after Jersey Shore unrest

‘We can’t wait for a catastrophe.’ Officials call for greater consequences for rowdy teens after Jersey Shore unrest

2:22
Newark high school students earn 60 college credits early as part of dual enrollment program

Newark high school students earn 60 college credits early as part of dual enrollment program

0:31
Prosecutor: Man accused of trying to rob 2 gas stations, grocery store arrested in Virginia

Prosecutor: Man accused of trying to rob 2 gas stations, grocery store arrested in Virginia

0:50
Jersey Proud: Seton Hall pep band director to retire after nearly 40 years

Jersey Proud: Seton Hall pep band director to retire after nearly 40 years

2:09
Menendez bribery trial: Jurors see texts sent between senator and wife regarding Egyptian military aid

Menendez bribery trial: Jurors see texts sent between senator and wife regarding Egyptian military aid

2:15
Officials announce multimillion-dollar project to help improve Port of New York and New Jersey

Officials announce multimillion-dollar project to help improve Port of New York and New Jersey

0:23
Route 71 Bridge connecting Belmar to Avon-by-the-Sea to reopen Friday

Route 71 Bridge connecting Belmar to Avon-by-the-Sea to reopen Friday

1:56
New Jersey marks first day of early voting for presidential primary

New Jersey marks first day of early voting for presidential primary

0:29
Charges against world’s top golfer Scottie Scheffler dropped after arrest outside PGA Championship

Charges against world’s top golfer Scottie Scheffler dropped after arrest outside PGA Championship

0:23
Police: Ex-owner of Morley’s Magic Theater in Butler accused of possessing child sex abuse materials

Police: Ex-owner of Morley’s Magic Theater in Butler accused of possessing child sex abuse materials

0:24
Police: Woman wanted for questioning in Newark shooting

Police: Woman wanted for questioning in Newark shooting

0:52
Strikes loom at 3 New Jersey hospitals as union fights for better staff-to-patient ratios

Strikes loom at 3 New Jersey hospitals as union fights for better staff-to-patient ratios

0:26
$83 million grant to renovate Brick Church Station in East Orange

$83 million grant to renovate Brick Church Station in East Orange

0:20
Police: Suspect wanted for stealing packages from Tinton Falls residence

Police: Suspect wanted for stealing packages from Tinton Falls residence

1:32
Father’s Day Gift Ideas: Exclusive Deals – Up to 50% OFF!

Father’s Day Gift Ideas: Exclusive Deals – Up to 50% OFF!

0:20
Police: Loaded gun found in man’s carry-on bag at Newark Airport

Police: Loaded gun found in man’s carry-on bag at Newark Airport

2:20
Activists hold rally in opposition to NJ Turnpike expansion project in Hudson County

Activists hold rally in opposition to NJ Turnpike expansion project in Hudson County

Is your dad awesome? New Jersey tell us why your dad rocks!

Is your dad awesome? New Jersey tell us why your dad rocks!