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Thanksgiving activities with kids in NYC: Parades, events & food

Your NYC guide to Thanksgiving with kids including Thanksgiving activities like the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and where to get Thanksgiving dinner.



Thanksgiving, one of our favorite family holidays, has arrived—and we're gearing up the for extra long holiday weekend. Brave the crowds at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade (keep an eye out for a new Snoopy and Woodstock balloon!) load up on one of our favorite Thanksgiving pies and scroll through our picks for the best Thanksgiving weekend activities. Most of all, though, enjoy the time with your family and encourage everyone at the Turkey Day dinner table to say what they're most thankful for this year.

RECOMMENDED: Things to do in New York City this fall with kids

When is Thanksgiving?

Thanksgiving is held on the fourth Thursday in November. This year, Thanksgiving falls on November 28, 2013.

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade guide

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade Photograph: Filip Wolak

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade

For the 87th year, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade will usher in the season with balloons, floats and celebrities.

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade Balloon Inflation

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade Balloon Inflation Photograph: Filip Wolak

Macy's Parade Balloon Inflation

Head to the UWS on Thanksgiving Eve to watch as the balloons transform from wilted fabric into floating giants.


Thanksgiving Day activities

Thanksgiving Day activities for families

Find a spot in the parade crowds, duck in to a seasonal

BAMcinématek: Kid Stuff

  • Price band: 2/4

Introduce little cinephiles to art house films that explore

  1. BAM Rose Cinemas 30 Lafayette Ave, between Ashland Pl and St. Felix St, 11217
  2. Until Mon Dec 2
More info

Disney on Ice Presents Let's Celebrate

  • Price band: 3/4

Those who simply can't decide on a favorite holiday are

  1. Izod Center Meadowlands Sports Complex, 50 State Rte 120
  2. Until Sun Dec 1
More info

Radio City Christmas Spectacular

  • Price band: 3/4

You'll get a kick out of this holiday stalwart, which still

  1. Radio City Music Hall 1260 Sixth Ave, at 50th St
  2. Until Mon Dec 30
Buy tickets

Thanksgiving weekend activities

Thanksgiving weekend activities

Staying in town over the holiday? We've got the scoop on

The Amazing Max and The Box of Interesting Things

  • Price band: 2/4

During this family magic show (which is back for a six-week

  1. Manhattan Movement & Arts Center 248 W 60th St, between Amsterdam and West End Aves
  2. Until Sat Apr 19
More info

Family Art Project: Harvest Time Hangings

  • Price band: 1/4

Kids turn nature into wall art by gathering leaves, cones,

  1. Wave Hill W 249th St, at Independence Ave, 10471
  2. Until Sun Dec 1
More info

The Fresh Beat Band

  • Price band: 3/4

Nickelodeon stars Kiki, Shout, Marina and Twist will have

  1. Theater at Madison Square Garden 4 Pennsylvania Plaza (Seventh Ave), between 31st and 33rd Sts
  2. Until Sat Nov 30
More info

Family restaurants open on Thanksgiving Day

Family restaurants open on Thanksgiving Day in NYC

Family restaurants open on Thanksgiving Day in NYC Photograph: Lizz Kuehl

Family restaurants open on Thanksgiving Day

Some of our favorite restaurants, from Cowgirl in the West Village to Brooklyn's Marco Polo, are pulling out all the stops to provide kids and their parents with a homey, festive Thanksgiving Day meal that's as tasty as it is relaxing.


Best desserts in New York City

Pecan pie at Bouchon Bakery

Pecan pie at Bouchon Bakery Photograph: Marielle Solan

Thanksgiving pies for families

Whether you’re craving pecan, pumpkin or apple varieties—or something altogether different—we’ve got you and your family covered for dessert on Thanksgiving Day.


New York kids answer: What are you thankful for?

Lexi, 7, UWS
“I’m thankful for my family and my friends.  And I love to read so I’m thankful for books – especially Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Ivy and Bean books!”

Lexi, 7, UWS “I’m thankful for my family and my friends. And I love to read so I’m thankful for books – especially Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Ivy and Bean books!”

New York kids answer: What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving?

Thanksgiving is a time for families to get together to eat delicious turkey dinners and say thanks. We asked kids in New York "what are you thankful for?"


November 2013 events calendar for New York City

Holiday Train Show

  • Price band: 1/4
  • Critics choice

Some 150 landmarks featured in NYBG's popular diorama are

  1. New York Botanical Garden Bronx River Pkwy, at Fordham Rd, 10458
  2. Sun Nov 16 - Wed Dec 31
More info

Origami Holiday Tree

  • Price band: 2/4
  • Critics choice

More than 500 handmade origami ornaments adorn the holiday

  1. American Museum of Natural History Central Park West, at 79th St, 10024
  2. Until Sun Jan 12
More info

New York Transit Museum's Holiday Train Show

  • Critics choice
  • Free

Within Grand Central Terminal you’ll find the New York

  1. New York Transit Museum Gallery Annex Grand Central Terminal, E 42nd St, between Lexington and Vanderbilt Aves
  2. Until Sun Feb 23
More info

Angelina Ballerina: The Very Merry Holiday Musical

  • Price band: 2/4

Katherine Holabird's lovable, rosy-hued mouse dances into

  1. McGinn/Cazale Theatre 2162 Broadway, at 76th St, fourth floor
  2. Until Sun Jan 5
More info

Related coverage of Thanksgiving activities

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade Balloon Inflation

Photos: Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade balloon inflation (2012)



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