Philly’s own 6ABC Thanksgiving Day Parade is the oldest Thanksgiving Day Parade in the country, dating back to 1920 when Gimbels Department Store ran the show. Now, the parade is back for its 98th year, bringing marching bands, big floats, and performances to the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.
The long-standing tradition takes place on the morning of Thanksgiving, Thursday, November 23, but set up and road closures start in the days leading up to the actual parade. That, combined with all the folks coming in and out of Philly for the holiday, could make getting around the city a bit of hassle.
Here’s everything you need to know about the 6ABC Dunkin’ Donuts Thanksgiving Day Parade, from it’s 1.4-mile route to road closures to where you can and can’t park.
When is the 6ABC Thanksgiving Day Parade?
This year’s parade kicks off on Thursday, November 23 at 8:30 a.m. and goes until 12 p.m. It will be broadcast on 6ABC.
What is the parade route?
It’s the same route as last year: The 1.4-mile route starts at 20th and JFK Boulevard. The parade will then turn left onto the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and make its way toward Logan Square, circling up toward the art museum.
Which streets will be closed for parking?
All metered parking throughout the city will be free on Thanksgiving Day, but there are still certain no parking zones in effect starting on Wednesday, November 22. The parking authority will start towing cars on the parade route at 4 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day. Here’s where you cannot park:
- JFK Boulevard from 19th to 30th Street on both sides
- 20th Street from Market Street to the Benjamin Franklin Parkway
- Arch Street between 19th and 22nd Street
- Race Street between 16th and 17th Street
- 17th Street from Vine to Race streets
- Eastbound lanes of Vine Street from 15th to 17th streets
- Market Street from 19th to 20th streets between 4 a.m. and 11 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day.
Which streets will be closed during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade?
Road closures start as early as Tuesday night and end by Thursday.
Tuesday, November 21
6 p.m. to 12 a.m.: Eakins Oval, between Kelly Drive and MLK Drive closed for street rehearsals.
Wednesday, November 22,
- 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Eakins Oval, between Kelly Drive and MLK Drive
- 6 p.m. to Thursday, November 23 at 2 p.m.: Eakins Oval, between Kelly Drive and MLK Drive
- 1 p.m. to Thursday, November 23 at 11 a.m.: JFK Boulevard and 20th Street to 30th Street Station
Thursday, November 23rd
- 1 a.m. to 2 p.m.: Market Street, 19th to 21st Streets
- 4 a.m. to 2 p.m.: 20th Street, Market to Ben Franklin Parkway
- 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.: Traffic southbound on Kelly Drive will be detoured through the park at Fountain Green Drive to Oxford Drive and 33rd Street
- 7:40 a.m.: Remaining parade route will be shut down for the step off at 8:15 AM.
What about getting around Center City that day?
A bunch of buses will be detoured for the parade starting Wednesday, November 22 as crews start setting up along the Parkway. SEPTA has a full list with specific information on each bus detour.