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Thanksgiving Day Parade 2012

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Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade in a Nutshell:

The Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade has been an annual tradition for Chicago residents, and this year is no different. The parade, which celebrates its 79th year and is sponsored by McDonald's, will once again march down State Street on Thanksgiving (November 22, 2012).

This Year the Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade Will Include:

Visits from Santa Claus and Ronald McDonald.

Some of Chicago’s most talented high school marching bands.

Giant balloons, including Garfield, Curious George and Underdog.

The McDonald's Thanksgiving Parade is the only parade in the city of Chicago to feature inflatable balloons every year.

Bit of history on the parade: It started in the times of the Great Depression and has been "lifting the spirits of Chicago and bringing the community together in celebration." Over 400,000 people lines the parade route on State Street.

Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade Essentials:

The Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade Web site has maps of the parade’s route and viewing areas. The parade begins at 8 a.m. on November 24, starting at State Street and Congress, usually around 11 a.m.

History of the Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade: Chicago’s Thanksgiving Day Parade started in 1936 when Walter Gregory, then president of the State Street Council, created the “Christmas Caravan” intended to stimulating economic development on State Street and also to cheer people up during the Depression.

When is the Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade:

The parade will take place on Thanksgiving Day, November 22, 2012.

Where is the Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade:

The parade will go along State Street from Congress to Randolph Street. (Worth reading: Christkindlmarket 2012 and December 2012 Events in Chicago)

Getting to the Thanksgiving Day Parade:

Due to the large crowds it is recommended to take public transportation to the Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade. If you are coming from the suburbs, you can take the Metro train to Union Station and then either walk to the start at State Street and Congress or take a cab. if you live in Chicago, you can take public transportation to the start, including the CTA bus or EL train. Use our Public Transportation Guide to learn about which train or bus is right for you.

Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade Broadcast Information:

If you can’t make it out for the parade, WGN-TV will have a live broadcast (channel 9 in Chicago). WGN-TV is broadcast nationwide, so even if you are out of town for the holiday, you can still watch it. Last year more than 5 million viewers nationwide tuned in and close to 400,000 spectators lined State Street.

Admission to the Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade:

Admission to the parade is free.

For More Information on the Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade:

For more information on the Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade, visit the parade's Web site, including the parade's Contact Us Page, which has key phone numbers for parade staff. (Worth reading: When is Thanksgiving? / Thanksgiving Recipes l Thanksgiving Wines)
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