Wednesday, November 21, 2007

macy s thanksgiving day parade

Thanksgiving can be a cornucopia of color, but green will be queen at the 81st Annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Workers spent the day filling the 12 giant balloons to be featured during Thursday� parade.

Dozens are scheduled to perform, including Good Charlotte, Menudo, Dolly Parton and the Radio City Rockettes as well as some of our own local celebrities.

Six dancers who are members of the Temple Kittens Drill Team will take part in the big finale.

Their performance to 'Santa Claus is Coming to Town' will be at the end of the parade, right before Santa makes his debut.

You can catch the Kittens?performance and the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade on NBC 6 from 8:00 to 11:00 a.m.
One of Circus World Museum's most spectacular circus wagons will play a featured role in the Macy 's Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City, sponsored, appropriately, by a circus.

The wagon is one of the museum's prize possessions, part of a colorful collection of antique restored circus parade wagons. Known as the Ringling Bros. United States Band Tableau, it was built by Bode Wagon Co. of Cincinnati in 1903.

For the Thanksgiving Day parade, the 5-ton-plus wagon will need the locomotion of eight Percheron horses driven by Myron Layton, of Standfordville, N.Y. Layton 's hitch has pulled the heavy wagons in several Great Circus Parades in the past, according to a news release from the Circus World Museum in Baraboo.

The wagon, which was loaded Tuesday for the trip to New York, will be sponsored by the Big Apple Circus, a 30-year tradition and "a soiree of scintillation" in New York City.

A troupe of circus musicians led by Charles Schlarbaum will occupy the wagon.

The parade, which is set to begin at 10 a.m. Thursday, will be broadcast on NBC television, WMTV (Ch.15) in Madison. For those hoping to see this wagon, it should be on the broadcast at 10:29 a.m., said Big Apple spokesman Joel Dein. The wagon will trail behind the Pillsbury Doughboy float, Dein said.

The wagon was designed as one of several with world power commemoration, this one representing the United States. According to a museum description, the "rolling masterpiece " features hand-carved decorations focused on the allegorical "Goddess of Liberty," flanked by Native American figures.

The 22-foot wagon was used by Ringling Bros. in street parades through 1918. According to a museum catalog, the last time it appeared in a circus parade was in New York on April 21, 1923: "The circus staged a street procession in support of the Mayor 's Committee of Women, which was generating monetary support for the Milk Fund."

It was restored by museum craftsmen in 1991. The 200 circus wagons and vehicles at the museum in Baraboo account for two-thirds of the circus wagons in existence.
The strangest annual holiday performance platform must be the gaily painted blacktop in front of the New York Macy's store on a Thanksgiving morning.

That's where stars Ashley Tisdale, Corbin Bleu, Dolly Parton, Good Charlotte, Jordin Sparks, the Jonas Brothers, Menudo, Ne-Yo, Sarah Brightman and Wynonna Judd will all pause to sing while waving incessantly as part of The 81st Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade (NBC, 9 a.m.).

The "Today" (NBC, 7 a.m.) team of Matt Lauer, Meredith Vieira and Al Roker will host. Santa Claus is likely to appear last.

Roger Catlin E-mail | Recent columns

It's followed by what has become another tradition: The National Dog Show (NBC, noon), hosted by West Hartford native John O'Hurley in Philadelphia.

Once the parade was followed immediately by the movie that capitalized on it, "Miracle on 34th Street" (NBC, 2 p.m.). But at least it's the 1947 original, not the 1994 remake.

Another Thanksgiving tradition: football in Detroit, with the Packers at Lions (Fox, 12:30 p.m.). It's followed by Jets at Cowboys (CBS, 4 p.m.).

Remote Patrol
One of those returning shows that makes you scratch your head with wonder (as with "What About Brian?") is "October Road" (ABC, 10:02 p.m.), the show about the big-shot writer returning to his little town in Massachusetts. (It's shot entirely in Atlanta). A season premiere tonight leads to its regular slot on Monday.

Seth Green stars in the first half of a two-part "Grey's Anatomy" (ABC, 9 p.m.).

Celine Dion and Patti LaBelle are honored at the 19th World Music Awards (MyNetworkTV, 8 p.m.) from Monte Carlo. But who is the person taking home the most awards from the event, recorded Nov. 4 in Monte Carlo? A British singer named Mika.

"Legally Blonde: The Musical" (MTV, 8 p.m.) gets a replay, this time with the lyrics so you can sing along.

How could they vote somebody off "Survivor: China" (CBS, 8 p.m.) on Thanksgiving? Well, they don't; tonight is a midseason recap.

Among tonight's leftovers: a repeat of the BET Awards (BET, 7:30 p.m.) playing opposite a repeat of the CMA Awards (CMT, 8 p.m.) and a rerun of last night's "Deal or No Deal" (CNBC, 8 p.m.).

One thing lost on Thanksgiving is the 44th anniversary of an assassination that otherwise certainly would have been recognized. Instead, the only glimpse of JFK comes in one of those faked scenes in "Forrest Gump" (History, 8 p.m.). That's right: the History Channel.

Tonight's films on Turner Classic Movies are chosen by the winner of the first Guest Programmer Contest. So the choices for actor and writer Paul Aguirre: "The Greatest Show on Earth" (8 p.m.), "The Happy Time" (10:45 p.m.), "The Crowd" (12:30 a.m.) and "Westward the Women" (2:15 a.m.).

Late Talk
(All reruns) David Letterman: Eugene Levy, John Mayer. Jay Leno: Howie Mandel, Nelly Furtado. Conan O'Brien: Brad Garrett, Joy Behar, Rogue Wave. Craig Ferguson: Felicy Huffman, Dax Shepard, Akon. Last weekend, as Broadway's strike talks resumed, there was a surge of optimism among theatergoers in New York and around the nation. When talks faltered on Sunday night, that optimism died.

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Interactive Feature
Strike on Broadway
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Strike Survival Guide
A list of some of the shows currently running that are recommended by Times theater critics.

Post a Comment People planning to visit the city and take in a show had a new decision to make: Now that most of the shows they wanted to see were canceled, should they still come?

Some decided to cancel their holiday vacations, but many others, like Lysa M. Hetrick, 12, vowed to make the best of it and either get tickets to one of the shows still open or just find other things to do.

Lysa, a seventh grader from Scottsdale, Ariz., in the city until Saturday, was busy rehearsing for her chorus role in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, but she hoped to catch a few shows anyway. The ones she wanted to see most, "Legally Blonde," "Hairspray," "Chicago" and "A Chorus Line," are all shuttered.

"I'm disappointed, but I guess I'll find something else to do," Lysa said. Her plans now include shopping, dinner, ice skating and the Rockettes.

Lysa's mother, Maria D. Castro, 43, was disappointed, too.

"I'm wondering if we can afford to come up again," said Ms. Castro, a doctor. "We've seen some of the traveling shows, but it's not the same as being on Broadway; it's not the caliber."

Karen Thurm Safran, 45, from San Jose, Calif., had been over-the-moon ecstatic about the great seats she had obtained for herself and her two children to see "The Phantom of the Opera," another one of the canceled shows.

"My son, when he was 8, used to walk around the house singing 'Christine, Christine, you have to do your homework' to the 'Phantom' music," Ms. Safran said. "My kids were glued to the DVD of the movie."

She got some financial gain from the strike. Ms. Safran asked the hotel to discount her reservation to match the current strike prices the hotel is charging and saved about $250. She said her family might go to watch the balloons get blown up for the parade.

"We're trying to get tickets to the Rockettes, but we'll be way up high in the nosebleed section," she said.

Many people who have seen the headlines about the strike have missed the fact that eight Broadway shows remain open, said Chris Boneau, a spokesman for several Broadway and Off Broadway shows still running. Among the shows still playing are "Mary Poppins," "Pygmalion" and "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee."

He said some Disney employees were staying outside the theaters where canceled Disney productions had been playing, giving advice to people on what they could do. Some people needed directions to bars and restaurants; others needed hugs.

Jef Furr, 51, senior vice president of Music Travel Consultants in Indianapolis, a company that books trips for performing groups, had his own headaches from the strike. He had organized trips by three groups of high school band students, who were coming to the East Coast to play in the Macy's parade and in a parade in Philadelphia. The students were spending about $900 apiece on airfare, food, lodging and tickets to the Rockettes and "Legally Blonde."

Watching the strike news, Mr. Furr sent a panicked e-mail message to his group sales agent to try to get the tickets exchanged. He was relieved to learn they would now see "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee."

"The funny thing is, one of the groups that was seeing 'Legally Blonde,' when the band director told his kids they were now going to see 'Spelling Bee,' the kids were more excited," he said.

Evania G. Nichols, 47, had planned to fly in for the week with friends from Orlando, Fla. They had tickets for "Jersey Boys," "Wicked" and "A Chorus Line," all of them now closed.

"I was really on pins and needles this weekend when I thought they'd make a decision," Ms. Nichols said of the negotiations. She eventually decided not to make the trip.

"During Thanksgiving, it's so magical," she said. "It's one of those things you only do this time of year; it's the whole deal."

Ms. Nichols, who works in sales for Johnson & Johnson, estimated that she would have spent $4,000 on tickets, hotel, dinner and transportation, not including the shopping she was planning to do. Instead, she made plans to meet friends in North Carolina.

"We're going to watch the parade on TV and make horribly disgusting breakfast pastries, and we'll be sad," she said. "It's such poor timing. They probably could have picked a time that would have sent a message without punishing so many people."

Mr. Boneau was just looking forward to the end of the strike. "We're going to all hold hands and sing 'Kumbaya' when this is all over."


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