08 Nov Balloons Over Broadway
Thanksgiving is just a few weeks away. I love traditions and holidays, so I’m super excited, but there is one part of Thanksgiving Day that makes me the MOST excited.
THE MACY’S THANKSGIVING DAY PARADE. (Yes, that required all caps)
I love the tradition Thanksgiving feast, but I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. On Thanksgiving Day, watching the parade is my priority. It’s not Thanksgiving without the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. It brings me such joy to see the balloons floating amongst the skyscrapers and the bands playing and the Rockettes perform. It’s all so wonderful.
Several years ago, my husband gave me the birthday surprise of a lifetime when he arranged for us to spend Thanksgiving Week in New York City for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. It was so incredible to be just mere feet away from the balloons and to see them floating above our heads. It’s been 5 years since we went and it still takes my breath away thinking about it.
When I found Balloons Over Broadway by Melissa Sweet, I was SO VERY EXCITED. I have enjoyed Melissa’s multimedia art and storytelling abilities before in Some Writer: The Story of E.B.White, and I knew we were in for a treat with Balloons Over Broadway. Balloons Over Broadway is the story of the puppeteer, Tony Sarg, who made the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade what we all love today.
The story is incredible; Melissa Sweet shares incredible details of how Tony Sarg created the infamous balloons, what inspired him and the beginning of such a rich tradition. Balloons Over Broadway says “It’s the Parade New Yorkers Would Never Forget”. That’s so true, but I’m from Georgia, and I never forget this beautiful tradition of watching the parade.
My kids loved reading Balloons Over Broadway. We read it at bedtime, and there were shouts of recognition to the balloons as we read. They loved the story, but the art is exquisite and it brings the story to life. Melissa Sweet uses multimedia art and collage techniques to build her story. As Tony Sarg brainstorms over how to make the parade and how to build a balloon that isn’t heavy and doesn’t destroy buildings, but can be seen by ALL THE PEOPLE, you feel like you are right there from the conception of the parade in 1924 to the Balloons introduction in 1933. This picture book, Balloons Over Broadway, has this magical ability to taking 21 century kids (and adults!) back to 1933 when the parade was still a baby and the Balloons were just a concept, not a rich tradition.
For me, reading Balloons Over Broadway made me so nostalgic for the week we spent in New York City during Thanksgiving. It made me miss the restaurant Thanksgiving meal we had, and the painfully early morning we spent on the sidewalk waiting for the parade to come past our location. It made me remember going to see the Balloons the night before Thanksgiving Day. It made me miss being in New York City during Thanksgiving and it reminded me that there is something truly special about being in such an iconic place like New York City and and participating in viewing (in person!) such a wonderful and rich tradition like the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Be sure to grab a copy of Balloons Over Broadway. It will get you all ready to see the gigantic balloons and a wonderful parade – whether you view it from the comfort of your skyscraper home in New York City or from the television screen in your home as it streams across the country. You can find out more about The Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade here.
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