Giving Thanks – Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade History

In the 1920s, many of Macy’s department store employees were first-generation immigrants. Proud of their new American heritage, they wanted to celebrate the American holiday of Thanksgiving with the type of festival their parents had loved in Europe. In 1924, the annual Thanksgiving parade moved from Bamberger’s in New Jersey to Macy’s in New York City. Employees, many of whom were first-generation immigrants looking for ways to celebrate as they had in Europe, marched to Macy’s flagship store on 34th Street dressed in vibrant costumes. There were floats, professional bands, and live animals borrowed from the Central Park Zoo. At the end of that first parade, Santa Claus was welcomed into Herald Square. At this first parade, however, the Jolly Old Elf was enthroned on the Macy’s balcony at the 34th Street location. A huge success from the first year the parade welcomed over a million people by 1933. The parade was broadcast on the radio from 1932 to 1941 and 1945 until 1951. The only stop in the parade was during World War II. Televised broadcasting of the parade began in 1948 after the parade was made even more popular in the movie “Miracle on 34th Street”. Many families today travel to New York City to be a part of the parade. School groups from all over the nation participate in the festivities. Nearly a hundred years from its beginning, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade continues to thrill both the young and old. As we approach this Thanksgiving Holiday, we are so thankful for all of our loyal customers throughout the years. With over 50 years of service, our longevity speaks for our quality. Contact us at Spencer Air Conditioning and Heating by calling us at 972-446-COOL (2665) or find us on the web at