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November 16, 2023

Here is your guide to the 2023 Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade

The annual event takes place Thursday, Nov. 23 on Benjamin Franklin Parkway from 9 a.m. until noon

Holidays Thanksgiving
2023 thanksgiving day parade J. Fusco/VISIT PHILADELPHIA

The 2023 Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day Parade will take place on Thursday, Nov. 23 from 9 a.m. to noon.

Philadelphia's beloved Thanksgiving Day Parade returns to Benjamin Franklin Parkway next Thursday for its 104th year.

The oldest Thanksgiving parade in the country takes place on the Parkway from 9 a.m. to noon and will be broadcast on 6ABC. Whether people in the region plan to start their Thanksgiving morning in front of their TVs or outside in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, there is plenty of excitement surrounding this year's event.

MORE: National Dog Show returns for 15th year later this month

The parade will be hosted by members of the 6ABC Action News team, including Adam Joseph, Alicia Vitarelli, Cecily Tynan, Karen Rogers and Rick Williams, along with reality TV personality Carson Kressley.

From road closures to special guests, here is what to know about this year's parade:

Weather forecast

Thanksgiving is over a week away, so the forecast is subject to change, but AccuWeather currently predicts next Thursday will be sunny with a high of 54 degrees and a low of 37 degrees.

Parade route

The parade begins at 20th and JFK Boulevard, then turns left on 16th Street toward Ben Franklin Parkway. The parade then turns left on the Parkway and ends by the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

One of the best places to watch the parade is in the Parade Zone, located in Eakins Oval in front of the art museum, which will feature Dunkin' giveaways and family-friendly fun.

Parking and road closures

Metered street parking is free on Thanksgiving, and there are several parking lots and garages that will be open near the parade route. 

Public transportation is likely the most reliable means of navigating the parade, as there will be temporary no parking zones in some areas near the route and many streets will be closed to traffic. SEPTA Regional Rail, bus, subway, trolley and PATCO routes are located within walking distance of the parade. There are also bike-share stations nearby.

Road closures on Thursday, Nov. 23 are as follows: 

12 a.m. to 12 p.m.: 20th Street between JFK Blvd and Market Street
2-11 a.m.: 20th Street between Ben Franklin Parkway and Race Street
5 a.m. to 12 p.m.: 20th Street between JFK Blvd and Arch Street
6 a.m. to 12 p.m.: 20th Street between Market Street and Ben Franklin Parkway
8 a.m.: Full parade route

Special guests

Entertainers, celebrities, reality stars, sports figures and Disney characters will descend upon Philly for the Thanksgiving festivities. Special appearances will be made by Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos of "Live With Kelly and Mark," TV personality Ryan Seacrest, retired Philly radio host John DeBella and Sam Champion of "Good Morning America."

Dozens of marching bands, choirs and dance companies will perform on the Parkway this year, including an annual performance from students at the Philadelphia High School for Creative and Performing Arts and several acts from the Kimmel Cultural Campus. A full list of participants can be found on the parade website

Here are some of the notable guests expected at the parade:

• Ashlee Keating
• The cast of "Ain’t Too Proud" 
• The cast of "Company"
• The cast of "Dancing With the Stars"
• Colin Stough ("American Idol")
• Joey Graziadei ("The Bachelor")
• Jordan Mailata
• Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse and friends
• Santa Claus
• Sharpe Family Singers
• The Commodores
• Village People
• Eagles cheerleaders, drumline and pep band
• Philadelphia Ballet 
• Philadelphia Orchestra
• The Fancy Brigade Mummers Association

Floats and balloons

This year's floats and balloons include Mr. Potato Head, Horton the Elephant, Bumble the Abominable Snowman, Strawberry Shortcake, Smurfette and My Little Pony. There are also multiple giant turkeys, Santa Claus' sleigh and a Disney carriage.

How to watch

People who don't want to brave the chilly weather and crowds can tune in from home. The parade will broadcast live on 6ABC, starting with the pre-show at 8:30 a.m. The actual parade runs from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

While watching on TV, viewers can keep an eye out for "secret phrases" and enter them online for a chance to win prizes like free Dunkin' coffee for a year or free Dunkin' breakfast for 10.

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