Coronavirus: Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is back -- with precautions

NEW YORK — It is not quite the miracle on 34th Street, but traditionalists can take heart -- the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is returning in 2021.

>> PHOTOS: Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade 2021

This year’s event, which will be held beginning at 9 a.m. EDT on Nov. 25 in New York City, will have restrictions because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Participants must be masked and vaccinated, The New York Times reported.

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Exceptions to the mask rule will be made for singers, dancers and musicians, according to The Hill. The overall number of participants will be reduced by 10% to 20%, the website reported.

The traditional holiday parade, celebrating its 95th year, will be shown live on NBC.

The 2021 parade will travel a much longer route than last year’s event, which was confined to one block, Macy’s said on its website. Last year’s celebration was a made-for-TV event, but crowds will be allowed this year, WABC reported.

“Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has been a New York City institution for more than nine decades, growing to become an icon of American pop culture as it annually marks the official start of the holiday season,” Will Coss, executive producer of Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, said in a statement. “For our 95th celebration, we are delighted to return this cherished holiday tradition closer to its original form as we march down the streets of New York City and into the homes of a nationwide audience.”

This year’s two-mile parade in midtown Manhattan will return to its tradition of allowing marching bands. It also will have 80 to 100 handlers for its giant character balloons, an increase from last year’s muted event, the Times reported.

The parade will be capped by the arrival of Santa Claus as the parade ends in front of Macy’s, located at 34th Street and Herald Square.

Details on public viewing locations will be announced in November, NPR reported.

“We are thrilled to welcome back in its full form the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, a world-renowned celebration that ushers in the magic of being in New York City during the holiday season,” New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a statement. “We applaud Macy’s work to creatively continue this beloved tradition last year and look forward to welcoming back parade watchers to experience it safely, live and in person this November.”

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