If your perfect idea of a holiday parade includes a light snowfall, twinkling lights, joyful music and the mix of merry and mayhem, then you’re in luck. Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s has all of these – and more!
As a member of the parade’s operations team, I’ve seen exactly what it takes to pull off this spectacular experience. It’s certainly no small feat, requiring countless Team Members working year-round. I recently rounded up some of my favorite facts:
Total Parade Travel Time?
The parade will travel a total of more than 26 miles as it makes its way down the streets of Universal Studios Florida each night.
The Parade Floats are How Big!?
Without a doubt, the highlight of this parade is its 15 intricately hand-crafted floats featuring characters from Despicable Me, Madagascar, Shrek and more. And these floats are big. Really big.
Weighing in at about 30,000 pounds and measuring 35 feet long, the float featuring Shrek, Fiona and Dragon rivals the size of two large African elephants. Thanks to Dragon’s 16-foot wingspan, it’s also one of the widest.
How Big Are the Balloons?
It wouldn’t be a holiday parade without the classic Macy’s star balloons. These stars measure 24 feet wide or as wide as five taxi cars!
What Does It Take to Be a Balloon Pilot?
Piloting floats and balloons of this size takes practice, which is why training starts each summer for a team of nearly 300, including float operators, balloon handlers and parade escorts. (For the best view of all the floats and balloons in this year’s parade, Annual Passholders should watch from the exclusive viewing spot in front of Mel’s Diner!)
How Many Performers Are in the Parade?
You’ll see more than 100 dancers and characters during the parade – all dressed to impress in their holiday finest.
Last year, more than 220 gallons of snow machine fluid were used to create a special Florida snow flurry during the parade’s finale.
I promise you’ve never seen a parade like Universal’s Holiday Parade featuring Macy’s!
Don’t forget to share your excitement on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook with #HolidayLikeThis.