2016 is definitely a year that could use some holiday cheer. But before we can indulge in some much-deserved gluttony and materialism, we first have to welcome Santa Claus in Macy’s annual Thanksgiving Day Parade.
The 90th annual parade (which began in 1924, but didn’t take place during World War II) starts at 9am EST and will be aired live on NBC. You always have the option of watching the parade in real life, along the 2.5 miles of viewing area in Manhattan. But if you’d rather be toasty and drinking a warm beverage, here are your options for watching the parade indoors:
Since NBC has the rights to the live programming of the parade, the only channel you can watch it on this year is NBC. As Macy’s says on their official parade website, no recordings of the broadcast are available for sale; apparently, there’s no Netflix for gigantic balloon characters.
You’ll be able to watch the parade online through NBC’s live stream player (which requires a cable login) if you are in the US.
If you don’t have a cable login or are watching from outside the US, you can access a live stream of Columbus Circle via Earth Cam. Earth Cam has live streams set up for locations globally, including this camera that happens to be on the parade route. You won’t get any commercials or commentary if you watch the parade this way, but that actually might be more enjoyable.
Update: NBC and Macy’s announced today (Nov. 22) that they will be partnering with Verizon to live stream the parade on YouTube. The 360 live stream will be shot with five cameras and starts at 9am EST to sync with the parade’s start. Marlon Wayans and Olivia Culpo will host the online broadcast. You can watch it below or at the link here.
No matter how you end up watching the parade, don’t forget to wave to Santa at the end. Then, you can settle in with some turkey and watch the dogs prance around in the National Dog Show.