The weather forecast for Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade 2023 is looking windy for large balloons
Forecasters say the big rainstorm will be long gone by Thanksgiving morning, but high winds may still be blowing when the 2023 Thanksgiving Parade rolls into New York City.
Conditions are also expected to be breezy in Philadelphia, as the 6abc Dunkin’ Thanksgiving Parade rolls into the city Thursday morning.
Although both New York City and Philadelphia will enjoy dry conditions and mostly sunny skies on Thanksgiving Day, with temperatures rising into the low 50s — near average for late November — steady winds of 15 mph are expected. to 17 mph in Manhattan and winds. Wind speeds are expected to range from 10 to 15 mph in Philadelphia, according to the National Weather Service.
AccuWeather expects slightly stronger wind gusts Thursday morning — up to 25 mph in New York and up to 23 mph in Philadelphia.
New York has strict safety rules that limit how high the famous parade balloons can fly, depending on how strong the winds are. Under city regulations, steady wind speeds cannot exceed 23 mph, and wind speeds cannot exceed 34 mph for balloons to fly safely in the Thanksgiving Parade.
The rules were implemented after strong winds during the parade in November 1997 caused a “Cat in the Hat” balloon to fall onto a lamppost, injuring four people, including one person who ended up in a coma. Macy’s large balloons have been grounded only once during the show’s 97-year history. That was in 1971, when bad weather prevented rubber planes from flying.
Parade of balloons, floats and music
Twenty-five large balloons, 31 floats and more than a dozen musical performers are on the lineup for this year’s Macy’s parade, which begins at 8:30 a.m. Thursday and continues until noon. The 2.5-mile parade route runs from the Upper West Side of Manhattan to Midtown.
Philly’s annual parade, which has the distinction of being the nation’s first Thanksgiving parade, kicks off at 9 a.m. Thursday on Ben Franklin Parkway with numerous balloons, floats, bands and performers.
Note to spectators: If you plan to arrive at the parade routes early Thursday, be sure to pack your bags. Forecasters say morning lows will hover in the mid-40s in New York and Philly, and wind chills will reach 39 to 41 degrees.
Current weather radar
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Len Melisurgo can be reached at LMelisurgo@njadvancemedia.com or @LensReality.