We Love a Thanksgiving Day Parade
The floats and giant balloons, the marching bands and beauty queens—what’s not to like about a Thanksgiving Day parade? No disrespect to the legendary extravaganza in New York, but we wondered whether the South might have a few notable Thanksgiving parades of its own—and it does. It comes as no surprise that most of the Southern parades we found are in our cities, where crowds can line the downtown streets and watch the majorettes twirl, the mega balloons drift by, and the drum majors strut their stuff. However, we did manage to find at least one Thanksgiving Day parade with a beach vibe—and golf carts. Here are the upcoming parades we’ve found, from El Paso to Charleston. But we’re sure we likely missed a few. Please let us know if there are other lively Thanksgiving Day parades in your area
Novant Health Thanksgiving Day Parade
A 69-year-old North Carolina event, Charlotte’s parade is expected to draw a crowd of 100,000. It begins at 9:30 a.m. EST, at Tryon and Stonewall Streets. Search “Novant Thanksgiving Day Parade” in the App Store or on Google Play to download the app.
Find a hotel package with VIP parade seating and Thanksgiving dinner for two at dunhillhotel.com.
Bayou Classic Thanksgiving Day Parade
Last year, about 80,000 people turned out for this annual parade, the first event in a 4-day celebration that grew up around an annual football game between local rivals Grambling State and Southern University. The parade steps off at the Mercedes Benz Superdome at 3:30 p.m. CST, and ends at the French Market.
FirstLight Federal Credit Union Sun Bowl Parade
This Texas celebration has been around since 1936. It was held on New Year’s Day until 1978, when it moved to Thanksgiving Day. Some 250,000 are expected to turn out for the parade, which begins at 10 a.m. MST and follows Montana Avenue from Ochoa to Copia.
Wild Dunes Resort Thanksgiving Day Golf Cart Parade
Yep—this event is built around a golf-cart decorating contest. Led by the Isle of Palms Fire Department, it starts at 10:30 a.m. EST and includes an appearance by Santa.
Check out holiday packages and more of the resort’s Thanksgiving traditions at wilddunes.com.
H-E-B Thanksgiving Day Parade
Olympic gold medalists and Houstonians Simone Manuel and Simone Biles are Parade Marshals for the 67th annual parade through downtown Houston. Last year, a quarter of a million people came out to see the floats, giant helium balloons, and other entertainment. The festivities begin at 9 a.m. on Lamar and Smith Streets, traveling a 20-block route.
Ameren Thanksgiving Day Parade
This 32-year-old event—featuring everything from floats and marching bands to a charitable blanket drive—begins at 7th and Market Streets in downtown St. Louis at 8:45 a.m. CST.
Get intel on holiday fun at the city’s iconic Union Station Hotel at holidaysatunionstation.com.