Know Before You Go
- Parade Route, Street Closures & Security Measures
- History Of The Holiday's Most Famous Tradition
- CBSN New York's Thanksgiving Eve Special
- Complete Thanksgiving Coverage
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Gusty winds couldn't ground the iconic balloons at the 93rd annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City.
The NYPD cleared them for take-off shortly before the parade stepped off at 9 a.m.
WATCH: NYPD's Thanksgiving Parade Security Presser
More than a dozen character balloons were on display this year. Some were beloved classics, while others were new additions, like Astronaut Snoopy – in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the moon landing – Netflix's Green Eggs and Ham and SpongeBob SquarePants' pet snail, Gary.
It took some extra muscle for their handlers to contend with the winds.
Handlers had to wrangle a Nutcracker balloon when it bounced around and a parade marcher ran right into it. CBS2 was told she is fine.
"Smokey the Bear" was trying to get away from his handlers.
"The wind was whipping us all over it was great we had it under control the whole time," one handler said.
So there was no disappointment from kids when they spied characters they love. They also cheered for cheerleaders, dancers, and marching band members.
PHOTO GALLERY: 93rd Annual Parade Marches Through Manhattan
As many as 3.5 million spectators from near and far were expected to line the 2.5-mile route.
"Happy Thanksgiving from Ireland!" said one boy.
for more features.