Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade: 8 new floats and balloons to watch out for this year

What's a parade without a giant Minion and slices of bread?

By Joy Saha

Staff Writer

Published November 23, 2022 1:30PM (EST)

Thanksgiving Turkey balloon is seen during the 95th Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade on November 25, 2021 in New York City. (John Lamparski/Getty Images)
Thanksgiving Turkey balloon is seen during the 95th Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade on November 25, 2021 in New York City. (John Lamparski/Getty Images)

Thanksgiving has always been a momentous holiday in my household. 

My family's onging Thanksgiving tradition is spending hours of quality time in the kitchen to prepare each and every holiday dish from scratch. There's never a dull moment when we're all beating the clock to hand knead homemade dough for four different pies, prep our own marinade for the big bird and make freshly squeezed orange juice for the cranberry sauce.

But our most notable tradition is gathering around the television to watch the annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. Once Frank Sinatra's "New York, New York" theme plays at 9 in the morning sharp, our Thanksgiving festivities commence.

For more than 75 years, the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade has been both the biggest and the second-oldest Thanksgiving parade in the United States. The annual shindig kicks off on West 77th Street & Central Park West and ends at noon outside Macy's Herald Square. What makes the parade so fun to watch is its itinerary of unique floats and balloons, which changes every year.   

From a Minion-themed balloon to a Wonder bread float, here are 8 new floats and balloons to keep an eye out for during this year's parade:

Geoffrey's Dazzling Dance Party
This float from Toys 'R' Us will feature America's favorite giraffe Geoffrey DJing down the parade line en route to Herald Square. Geoffrey's Dazzling Dance Party will also be decorated with balloons, bright colors, toys and cold pyrotechnics. A giraffe — which is actually an inflatable costume worn by two people walking in tandem, per the parade's official website — will accompany the float too.




People of First Light

Macy's legacy tree float honors the Wampanoag Tribe, who have inhabited present-day Massachusetts and Eastern Rhode Island for more than 12,000 years. "The float's pathways symbolize the colors of the four directions, led by Grandmother Eastern Pine Tree, adorned by wampum shells of the water, & surrounded by sweetgrass, sassafras & wild berry plant relatives," according to Macy's.  


Elders from the Wampanoag Tribe of Mashpee & Cape Cod, Massachusetts will also be in attendance at the parade, sitting in a place of honor atop the float.

Baby Shark
Baby Shark, the anthropomorphic internet sensation who made their debut in a now-viral YouTube music video, will appear at the Macy's Thanksgiving parade in a "fin-tastic" float. Alongside Baby Shark is Mommy Shark, Daddy Shark, Grandma Shark and Grandpa Shark and eight starfish and three different species of anemone.

Get ready for that song to haunt your tryptophan-induced dreams.

Supersized Slumber
Netflix's fantastical float celebrates the streaming giant's new adventure film "Slumberland," which stars Marlow Barkley as the imaginative Nemo and her new friend Jason Momoa as Flip, a satyr con artist. The float itself is a towering supersized bed that has an impressive stride length of 35 feet. There's also elements of Nemo's dream-fueled adventures along with appearances from Flip and Nemo's good friend Pig.
The Wondership
Wonder Bread's colorful float will feature the brand's iconic red, blue and yellow-colored balloons along with loads of confetti! Alongside the float will be more than 900 "foam" slices of Wonder Bread, which will rise into the sky for Parade-goers to see along the way.


The titular character of the Australian animated series will make her debut at the parade as a balloon. Bluey is 52 feet tall, or as high as a four-story building; 51 feet long, or as long as nine bicycles; and 37 feet wide, or as wide as seven taxi cabs. She was also hand painted by a group of artists with approximately 50 gallons of blue paint.


Stuart the Minion

The comical character from Illumination's "Minions: The Rise of Gru" is traveling down the Parade route soon with his favorite food, a banana, in hand. Stuart is 37 feet tall, or as high as a three-story building; 40 feet long, or as long as seven bicycles; and 28 feet wide, or as wide as six taxi cabs.


Per the parade's official website, Stuart "is the first Parade balloon to ever use details created by a 3D printer." That's, um, bananas.


Striker the U.S. Soccer Star
This ballonnicle — which is a portmanteau of "balloon" and "vehicle" — from Fox Sports showcases Striker the U.S. Soccer Star executing a bicycle kick in celebration of this year's FIFA World Cup. Striker is 25 feet tall, or as high as a two-story building; 25 feet long, or as long as four bicycles; and 10 feet wide, or as wide as two taxi cabs.


By Joy Saha

Joy Saha is a staff writer at Salon, covering Culture and Food. She holds a BA in journalism from the University of Maryland, College Park.


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Baby Shark Balloons Floats List Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade Nbc Thanksgiving Tradition