It is a beautiful day, warm for this time of the year, and a perfect day to see some of the annual Thanksgiving Day parade. The parade is sponsored by Macy's, the giant department store. As I have shown you all in previous years, the parade draws huge crowds as it makes its way from my West Side neighborhood downtown to Macy's at 34th Street.
After an early oatmeal breakfast, I walked over to West 72nd Street and found lots and lots of normal-sized balloons being given away. The balloons advertised the special Christmas show at Radio City Music Hall.
Each of these balloons had a long ribbon attached to it, and some folks found intriguing ways to tie several balloons together, and some children found ways to release their balloons upwards into the bright blue sky. The lady in the fur coat was overdressed for the occasion.
As I got closer to Central Park West and the crowd grew thicker, I saw that this year several large orange Sanitation Department trucks had been parked across 72nd Street to create a barrier. I am guessing that this was some sort of safety procedure, but it also created some photograph-taking challenges for someone short like myself.
I began to wonder if I would actually be able to take any pictures of the famous giant balloons that are a major parade feature. I began to consider my strategy, while wandering around a bit, looking at various vendors' offerings.
The following view looks westward, away from Central Park West, and gives you an idea of the tall NYC apartment buildings lining 72nd Street. Remember this mom with the hat and stroller. She will re-appear later on.
The first balloon appears. I think it is Hello Kitty, but am not sure. I am sure that the famous Dakota building is on the left.
Here is another view of the Dakota. Can you see the strands of linked little balloons bobbing in the wind?
Here is Kermit the Frog, and I am now aware that taking pictures is going to be difficult. I am still behind the truck barricade.
Charlie Brown...you seem so very far away. My view is very obstructed.
I take another look at the vendors' fares and enjoy the opportunity for a close up photograph.
There is a slight entry/exit space between the two trucks. The Keep Back warning does not apply to parade watchers.
I am not sure if I will be able to slip between those trucks. It is very crowded on the other side of the trucks.
Alas, the trucks are not the only obstacles to a view. Everyone has a camera.
I decided to keep trying, and not to give up on capturing some of the parade for this post. Here's Spiderman!
I do not care for cotton candy, but hope that someone will buy this vendor's ample supply.
If you look in the left hand of the next vendor, you will see lots of dollar bills. He has been doing well with his souvenir stand.
I looked up at the sound of yet another helicopter hovering just above us. These helicopters might be for our safety, or might be part of parade television coverage.
There was no need to wait for a turkey dinner.
Well, I finally found my way to the parade side of those big orange trucks and once again saw the lady with the hat. She was also now wearing her husband's hat while he gave their beautiful little girl a good view. I was also about to get a better view.
Sponge Bob! The children in the crowd announce every new arrival with ease.
Unfortunately, I cannot remember the name of the following fellow.
Here is another mystery man.
Mickey, I definitely recognize you!
Who is this? I have no idea.
Ronald McD, of the famous fast food empire.
Ronald was followed by another foodie, the Pillsbury Dough Boy. Lighter than air.
Here's a friendly duck, perhaps wishing he could be over in the Central Park Lake.
Does a flying candy cane count as a part of any food group?
The Christmas theme continues with this cheery elf. Note the string of smaller balloons is still afloat as well.
Who is this? I am hoping that some readers might be able to supply additional identification for many of these characters.
I hope that you will be able to see that this trio with their festive conical hats are actually the Three Little Pigs...over sized.
Finally, as everyone began to feel a bit chilled, and children were beginning to feel a little cranky, we got to see the real star of the parade ... Santa Claus!
Everyone applauded and cheered. And then we all knew the parade was over for another year and that we were very glad to have seen it ... sort of up close. We counted our blessings!
I wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving and thank you for bearing up with this post's picture quality.