Talking Turkey

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Central Park West, 5:30 a.m. Thursday morning. Getting the balloons ready in order to begin the parade when the Sun is up. Photo: Paige Peterson.

Monday, December 2, 2019. Wintry cold, windy and rainy yesterday in New York with some of the snow from the Midwest adding to the picture — not blizzard-like, but enough to remind us that Old Man Winter will be coming in. This was a quiet, long, holiday weekend with a lot of neighbors out of town and road traffic noticeably lighter. I took a photo of tree across the street which is the last holdout of foliage in the neighborhood.

Today is also the birthday of our friend Harry Benson, and we are running a piece by Blair Sabol who has known Harry since they first worked together back in the early ‘70s in Los Angeles, on assignments for Vogue and People. Harry first came to New York in 1963 on assignment for a British tabloid with the Beatles. Since that initial foray, Harry has recorded much of the last fifty years of the American civilization with his camera in some of the most memorable photographs of the age.

Talking turkey.

Today is our annual coverage of Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade which is the aegis of our contributor Paige Peterson.  Paige lives on Central Park West in the neighborhood where the parade is actually organized, set up and launched right under her living room window. The process of organizing it began early on Wednesday with the staff working all day into the night to be ready to move. Paige got up at 5:30 am Thursday and took her first photo from her living room window, of everything getting into place. Then she went down to the street to get some closeups of the floats and balloons.

And a couple hours later, ensconced in the apartment of her friend Peter Brown, she took in the parade.

It so happened that Thursday we had fair weather except for powerful winds that actually threatened the progress of the balloons. So you will notice that a number of the balloons are moved along in horizontal positions, held as close to the roadway as possible to avoid being swept away. For awhile the winds along Central Park South were so strong that they briefly considered calling off the age old tradition.

Watching the parade from Peter Brown’s balcony overlooking Central Park West …

In the history of Thanksgiving Day parades, New York is tied with Detroit, both having first launched 95 years ago in 1924. They were preceded (and very possibly got the idea from) by the Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day parade.

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