Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Celebrating and Giving Thanks

As a Canadian we celebrated our Thanksgiving on the second Monday of October. The weather was mild enough to consider barbecuing the turkey.
So what do Canadians do in November when our neighbours in the United States celebrate Thanksgiving?
For some of our businesses that connect heavily with the United States we work around the holiday closures - a trade off from our October holiday. Some brave Canadian shoppers head over the boarder to upper U.S. states and take in the holiday sales. I prefer to avoid the crazy shopping days, but have always enjoy my own little tradition for the U.S. Thanksgiving.

I have always booked a 'me' day from work and stayed home to enjoy the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. Just me..... in my pajama's ....... with coffee....... and usually something decadent like cinnamon buns for breakfast - YUM {so now my secret is out}.  Later in the day I take time to get to work on my Christmas shopping list.
This year I plan to introduce my Granddaughter to the tradition - she loves parades, is crazy about balloons and has inherited our family sweet tooth. Maybe I need more cinnamon buns.

First Macy's Christmas Parade in 1924

The Macy's Thanksgiving Parade hosts 3 million viewers along the route and 50 million viewers 'at home'...... and then there are the Canadians like me who snuggle down to enjoy the celebration.

Look at that Turkey floating along with the Canadian Club billboard in the background.

Terrible Turk float - 1930

Times Square 1930

I love the floats and character balloons, over the years they have reflected a variety of current cartoon celebrities. There have been some 'incidences' with balloons over time, last year the Kool Aid Man tipped over - proof that the red fruity liquid really is potent.
The Thanksgiving celebration is guided through New York city by an army of 8 thousand volunteers. This year marks the 86th Annual parade, although the first parade year was 1924. The parade took a hiatus from 1942 - 1944 during World War II.

In 1934 Mickey Mouse makes his debut.

The Rockettes - 1957

The Rockettes have performed their precision dance routine at the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade since 1957. Their eye high kick performance is one of my favourites and I am always in awe that the dancers never miss a beat, even while dancing on the street.

Parade crowds in 1959

The crowds line the parade routes stretching their necks to look up to the giant balloons and enormous floats, they listen to the music of the marching bands and the song and dance routines from the Broadway shows. But the star of the show by far is the man in the big red suit. And as with all Christmas parades, he arrives last to the cheers of the children who are promising to be 'nice'.

1946 - Edmund Gwenn who played Santa in the Movie 'Miracle on 34th Street'

To my blog friends in the United States, I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving. 


  1. Thanks for sharing what Canadians do on our Thanksgiving. I love learning new things about everyone everywhere! Happy day!

  2. It's not a day off here of course, but many people like me celebrate the spirit. Watching the parade now and my Granddaughter says 'I love this'... that's my girl.

  3. I enjoyed learning about your celebrations especially as we don't celebrate Thanksgiving in England.