Thanksgiving In New York City: A MapQuest Guide
Thanksgiving in New York City is a time for gathering with family and loved ones, expressing gratitude and, of course, eating. As part of TurkeyQuest -- a MapQuest guide to Thanksgiving events, featuring everything from parades to holiday sales to activities for families -- here are two of the best ways to experience Thanksgiving in New York City and one opportunity to give back to others.
New York City Thanksgiving Events Map
Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
If there's anyone in the country who isn't familiar with this granddaddy of Thanksgiving events, he's probably a few yams short of a full meal. Many Americans wake up on Thanksgiving morning and tune in to watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade on TV. If your Thanksgiving plans include being in New York City, though, you should know that the famous balloons of cartoon characters are far more impressive in person. Plus, the nation's best marching bands, the famous Rockette dancers, the various floats and the best of the year's Broadway musicals performing live make for a great experience. Take part in a tradition that dates back to 1924 and was made famous by the film Miracle on 34th Street. But make plans early, because the best viewing spots go quickly. Insider tip: For a special treat, watch the balloons close up as they are inflated the night before Thanksgiving near the American Museum of Natural History.
Thanksgiving Day Marathon
Of all the marathons out there, the Thanksgiving Day Marathon in the Bronx offers a unique experience, with an all-trail run that laps through a 6.5-mile course. There are options for runners who aren't quite ready for 26.2 miles, including a 5K, a 10K and a half marathon. All finishing runners receive an engraved fork as a prize to use for Thanksgiving dinner and to keep as a memento of the run. Plus -- believe it or not -- the race is free (although donations are accepted).
Volunteer: The Bowery Mission
The Bowery Mission has fed, clothed and housed the homeless and needy in New York City since 1879, serving hundreds of thousands of meals a year. The mission offers volunteer opportunities for Thanksgiving -- serving lunch and dinner to guests or distributing "Blessings Bags,” gifts filled with toiletries and cold-weather clothing. For those who don't have the time to volunteer, the Mission often lists its urgent needs for items like men's pants on its website.
Thanksgiving In New York City: Video
A YouTube user captures the view in time-compressed form from 7th Avenue as the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade passes by.
Did we miss a New York City Thanksgiving event? Tell us about it in the comments section below.
Photo: All of olive.; Flickr