You’d think wild animals might cause more trouble than balloon animals.
Yet when Macy’s held its first parade 90 years ago, the animals borrowed from the Central Park Zoo were hardly a handful. It was instead the balloons, in ensuing years, that would terrorize New York City.
The department store debuted its annual parade on Thanksgiving Day in 1924, when store employees dressed as clowns, knights and cowboys marched along with elephants and horse-drawn floats in what was then called the Macy’s Christmas Parade. Then, like now, it kicked off the season of Christmas shopping that begins with Black Friday. But as the event has evolved over the years, new challenges have arisen — and sometimes popped.
Giant balloons joined the parade in 1927, starting with Felix the Cat. But Felix had no way to be deflated. When the parade ended, he was simply released into the sky, where…
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