Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade Balloons Might Not Fly Due to Wind

The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade has become a fixture of the holiday over the years, but things were shaping up to be a bit different during Thursday's go 'round thanks to the weather.

Earlier this week, amNewYork reports that since the National Weather Service was predicting temperatures projected to be in the low-to-mid 20s and winds of up to 20 mph with gusts to 30 mph on Thursday, there was potential for the balloons to be grounded during the parade in the Big Apple.

Chief of Patrol Rodney Harrison said at a news conference in Manhattan at police headquarters that the NYPD will deploy devices along the parade route to monitor wind speeds and that 34-mile per hour wind gusts would require the balloons to hit the ground.

Wednesday was balloon fill-up night at the American Museum of Natural History, with the parade’s 16 character balloons and almost 30 legacy balloons preparing to fly the next morning.

The last time the balloons were grounded due to strong wind was in 1971. This year's parade is the 92nd annual event.

Despite the potential for grounding, NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill officially gave the balloons permission to fly, sharing the news Thurdsay morning on the Today show.

"We've been waiting for this moment," anchor Hoda Kotb told O'Neill. "A lot of people have been following the wind, following the weather, wondering if these big balloons are gonna go. I think it's time to make a declaration."

"The parade's a go," O'Neill responded. "It's a little chilly out here, I'm trying not to look too cold, this is nothing compared to last New Year's Eve."

"New York City's got a lot to be thankful for," he continued. "I have a lot to be thankful for. Especially the men and women from the NYPD who are out there, they've been at it since early this morning, they'll be out here until this afternoon."

While the fate of this year's balloons was up in the air, things are now ready to roll, along with plenty of floats and performances scheduled to entertain viewers as the parade winds through New York City.

This year's performers include Kelly Clarkson, Rita Ora, Barenaked Ladies, Pentatonix, Kane Brown, Sugarland, Ashley Tisdale, Leona Lewis, John Legend, Carly Pearce, Martina McBride, Ella Mai, Tegan Marie, Bazzi, Ally Brooke, Bad Bunny, Anika Noni Rose, Mackenzie Ziegler and more. In addition, Diana Ross will appear with her children and extended family: Tracee Ellis Ross, Rhonda Ross, Chudney Ross, Ross Naess and Evan Ross and his wife, Ashlee Simpson.


The parade airs from 9:00 a.m. until noon in all time zones on NBC.

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