(NBC) — Brisk winds didn’t ruin things for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade last year, and COVID-19 won’t this year.
Changes include trimming the two mile parade route to just Herald Square, with no sidewalk spectators.
The iconic balloons will be wrangled by special vehicles instead of handlers on foot.
It will also include performances from the likes of Dolly Parton, Patti LaBelle and the casts of several Broadway shows.
“It’s going to be different obviously, you’re not going to have all the crowds and all that stuff, but for most people who watch it from home, you’re going to see what you normally see,” says co-host Hoda Kotb.
It’s an event Kotb savors even more now as mom to adopted daughters Haley and Hope.
“Watching them marvel at those balloons, it was like they couldn’t believe what they were witnessing,” she says. “The idea that they are going to be, even on television, this year seeing Santa is just incredible to me.”
Marching bands will also still be part of the parade, but only ones from the New York City area.
Invitations to other bands from around the country are being deferred to 2021 because of the pandemic.
The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade airs at 9 a.m. on NBC, followed by The National Dog Show at noon.