Louisiana will have a giant alligator-shaped float in this year's Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.
We reached out to state officials to get some details, and here they are:
The state is paying Macy's for the contract, which is a three-year commitment.
"Macy’s gets millions of viewers worldwide. This is an effort to put Louisiana on a national and international stage as Lt Governor Billy Nungesser and the Louisiana Office of Tourism promote our great state as a tourist destination and welcome back visitors," a spokeswoman says.
Macy’s is the builder and the designer with fabrication in New Jersey, and Louisiana tourism stakeholders across the state also gave input on the design of the float. The cost of building the float is included in the three-year package with Macy's.
On the day of the parade, the riders and walkers are Macy’s employees and children of Macy’s employees - and the children will be wearing gator costumes.
"There is a special guest, an entertainer from Louisiana, who will be announced soon," the spokeswoman said.
The float is a 60-foot gator carrying a New Orleans vignette on its back. Here's a picture:
“When it comes to parading, there is one thing Louisiana knows how to do and that’s throwing a party on wheels aboard the biggest float we can build,” said Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser. “In celebrating our state’s incredible lineup of music, food, and culture, we hope people from all over the country, and the world, will take part in visiting our lively state where every day is a celebration of life, and we treat you like family. Participating in a parade as historic as the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is a real honor for the people of Louisiana.”
“The Macy’s Parade is thrilled to welcome this awe-inspiring and colorful float to our lineup,” said Jordan Dabby, producer of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. “Sharing Louisiana’s rich history of celebration, the Parade’s newest float will bring the revelry to spectators lining the streets of New York City and enjoying the pageantry from homes nationwide.”
"Inspired by all facets of Louisiana’s culture and thriving tourist appeal, the “Celebration Gator” features a colorful street view of Louisiana: a blend of the New Orleans French Quarter architecture with heavy influences of Spanish colonial rule and Creole fashion. In addition to celebrating the state’s unique fusion of European, Caribbean, African, and Native American cultures, the float will include participants dressed in lavish baby gator costumes, as well as a team of stilt walkers, all done in an elaborate celebration of Louisiana traditions for millions of spectators in New York City and TV viewers across the nation," a release states.
The 95th Annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade® airs live nationwide on NBC on Thursday, November 25, 2021, from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. in all time zones.