3 MIN READ -- The award-winning Chicago Thanksgiving Parade (‘Where grateful hearts gather’) returns on Thursday, November 24 from 8-11 a.m. CT, traveling up Chicago's legendary State Street from Ida B. Wells Drive to Randolph Street. This free family tradition joyfully showcases the best talent from across the nation, including marching bands, festive floats, staged performances, equestrian units, cultural performance troupes, and inflatables, all led by celebrity hosts and a special visitor from the North Pole—offering a celebration with jolly sights and sounds for attendees of all ages.
New for 2022, CW26 will broadcast the entire Parade, airing live on WCIU, Channel 26.1, XFINITY 183|1026, RCN 6/606, WOW 10/207, Dish 26, Direct TV 26, Spectrum Charter 22/616 and U-Verse 10/1010. This year's Parade will be co-hosted by actors Jen Lilley (Days of Our Lives, Royally Wrapped for Christmas) and Jesse Hutch (Batwoman, Dream Wedding), soon to co-star in the Great American Family network's B&B Merry, one of the holiday's most anticipated movies, premiering Sunday, December 4.
For those seeking an extra-special experience, the Chicago Thanksgiving Parade offers VIP seating providing the best view of the Parade and the opportunity to enjoy the staged-for-TV performances right before their eyes, in addition to the forward-motion parade. Tickets for VIP access to the Chicago Thanksgiving Parade are $60 and available for purchase at www.chicagothanksgivingparade.com.
Attracting hundreds of thousands of spectators each year, the 2022 Chicago Thanksgiving Parade features an eclectic roster of festive participants from across the city and the globe, including:
- Staged live entertainment performances from 8-9 a.m., including American Blues Theater, Ballet Folklorico Sones Mexicanos, Chicago Korean Dance Company, Cirque Experience, country artist Donnie Lee Strickland, Crystal Lake Strikers Drumline, Danza Azteca Xochitl-Quetzal, Korean Performing Arts Institute of Chicago, Huaxing Arts Group, Music Theater Works, and Renacer Boliviano, with more to be announced.
- Marching bands—an annual family favorite of the Parade programming—hail from 19 high schools and universities including the University of Dayton, Bishop Noll Institute, Bloom Township High School, Cross Keys High School, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. High School, Heights High School, Hephzibah High School, Kankakee High School, Kipp East Academy, LaGrange High School, Lake Zurich High School, Marist High School, New Manchester High School, Northwest High School, Sequoyah High School, Southern Boone County High School, Southland College Prep Charter High School, Southwest DeKalb High School, and Thornwood High School.
- Specialty Units: 501st Legion Midwest Garrison, Aztec Dance - Xochitl-Quetzal, Ballet Folklorico Yolotzin, Bloom Township High School Choir, Chicago Boyz Acrobatic Team, Chicago Spirit Brigade, Cirque Experience, Crystal Lake Strikers Drumline, Heartbeat Music & Performing Arts Academy, Jesse White Tumbling Team, Korean Performing Arts Institute of Chicago, Michigan City Soul Steppers Drill Team, Mobile Azalea Trail Maids, NASCAR, Ozinga, Pro Dance Elite Studios, Renacer Boliviano, Royal Royal, Sensational Prancerettes Dance Company, Sterling Silver Studio, St. Paul Winter Carnival Royalty & Vulcan Krewe, Team Shockwave, The Barefoot Hawaiian, Thistle and Heather Highland Dancers, Unicycling Society of America, Inc., and Windy City Ghostbusters .
- Equestrians: American Sidesaddle Association, Bertrand's Miniature Horses, Escaramuza las Monarcas, Herder Holiday Horses, Ray of Hope Riders, and SOUL Harbour Ranch Animal Therapy Program.
- Festive Floats: Canadian Pacific, Casa de la Cultura Guatemalteca en Chicago, Chicago Chinese Culture & Art Society, Chicago Toys for Tots, Krewe of Europa, Mid-USA Falun Dafa Association, Punjabi Cultural Society, Santa's Village, Taipei Economic & Cultural Office in Chicago, and Wu Zhi Lin Performing Arts Association. Notably, the Bradenton, Florida-based Krewe of Europa each year unveils a new float and charity partner at a Parade in the U.S.; this year, the Krewe of Europa has selected the Chicago Thanksgiving Parade for this honor.
- Honored guests: Miss Illinois 2022 Monica Nia-Jones, Miss Illinois Outstanding Teen 2022 Mia Fritsch-Anderson, and Santa Claus!
Chicago Thanksgiving Parade sponsors include Canadian Pacific, CW26, Food Rocket, Harry Potter Magic at Play and Water Tower Place, NASCAR, Ozinga, Santa’s Village, Sheraton Grand Chicago Riverwalk, Taipei Economic & Cultural Office in Chicago, and WorldStrides OnStage.
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