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Human Interest

All the World Loves a Parade: the Biggest Moments and Performances from the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

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Erik Pendzich/REX/Shutterstock

A tradition 90 years in the making rocked the holiday!

The Macy’s annual Thanksgiving Day Parade took on Manhattan on Thursday with balloons and floats hitting the Big Apple parade route.

This year’s lineup of performers included country stars Kelsea Ballerini and Brett Eldredge, as well as Daya, Chloe x Halle, America’s Got Talent winner Grace VanderWaal, Sara Bareilles, Tony Bennett and Hamilton‘s Christopher Jackson.

Erik Pendzich/REX/Shutterstock
Kelsea Ballerini
Erik Pendzich/REX/Shutterstock
Erik Pendzich/REX/Shutterstock

Performer Sarah McLachlan, who wore an Eliza J sequin top and jacket, documented some behind-the-scenes parade magic before singing “Silver Bells.”

Early special Broadway performances included a rendition of “Blue Skies” by the cast of Holiday Inn, who also did an impressive tap-dance number. Later, the stars of Waitress sang after an introduction by the show’s composer Bareilles.

The cast of NBC’s upcoming Hairspray Live! — including Ariana Grande, Kristin Chenoweth and Jennifer Hudson — also debuted their “You Can’t Stop the Beat” routine.

Topping the Homewood Suites float, singer Aloe Blacc performed his hit “Candyman.” Later, on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles float, Jacob Whitesides crooned “Lovesick.”

VanderWaal sang her original song, “I Don’t Know My Name,” on the GoldieBlox float, and was followed closely by the brand-new Trolls balloon.

Grace VanderWaal
Erik Pendzich/REX/Shutterstock

Soon after, newly crowned Dancing with the Stars champion Laurie Hernandez waved to crowds alongside other U.S. Olympic gold medalists.

Laurie Hernandez
Erik Pendzich/REX/Shutterstock

On the Build a Bear float, Chloe x Halle brought the sass, and atop the South Dakota Mount Rushmore presentation, Ben Rector sang “Brand New.”

As always, the parade closed out with a visit from the big man in red himself: Santa Claus.

Erik Pendzich/REX/Shutterstock
Erik Pendzich/REX/Shutterstock

Late on Wednesday night, volunteers helped inflate the array of balloons, which include Pikachu, Elf on the Shelf, and Charlie Brown.