Macy’s Watches The Forecast, Might Scrap Parade Balloons
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – There is at least a possibility that one of the staples of the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade might not be there this year.
WCBS 880’s Sean Adams On The Story
The storm that is blowing through the Tri-State area is expected to leave behind some blustery winds for Thanksgiving morning.
At this point, they probably won’t be strong enough to ground the magical Macy’s giant balloons, but Macy’s is keeping an eye on things.
The threshold is sustained winds of 23 miles per hour, with gusts up to 34 miles per hour.
1010 WINS’ Sonia Rincon with the Macy’s parade spokesman
Snoopy, Spider-man, Spongebob, Kermit, Clumsy the Smurf, and the other big balloons all have trained handlers and navigation teams, with handheld wind gauges.
If for some reason the giant balloons are unable to be added to the line-up Macy’s would still have 44 other mid-sized and smaller balloons in the parade.
“People would still be able to see a spectacle like no other,” spokesman Orlando Veras tells 1010 WINS. “It’s our 85th anniversary with 27 floats, 8,000 participants, celebrities and 44 other balloons as well.”
Macy’s will make the final call an hour before the start of the parade.
“It’s all based on the current wind conditions,” Veras said.”Of course we can adjust it as the parade goes on. Each balloon is designed to fly at different heights and different positions based on current wind conditions.”
Strict guidelines were put in place after the 1997 parade, when the Cat in the Hat balloon came free and crashed into a lamppost, putting a woman in a coma.
Macy’s will blow up all the balloons Wednesday night, rain or shine.
The balloons are inflated on the Upper west Side surrounding the Museum of Natural History, and the public is welcome to come view the balloons between 3 p.m. and 10p.m. The entrance is on 79th Street and Columbus Avenue.
What’s your favorite balloon? Sound off in the comments section below!