The president and owner of Richard J Girasole CPA, PC, based in Brooklyn, New York, Richard Girasole offers accounting and tax processing for individual and corporate clients. Besides work, Richard Girasole is heavily involved in community activities in the New York area and participates in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Every year since 1924, except for 1942 to 1944, the department store chain Macy’s has held the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in Manhattan. The parade grew from humble beginnings, with only about 250,000 people lining the streets to watch its first incarnation, to over three million spectators and over 50 million TV viewers each year.
Organizing the event involves more than 6,500 volunteers to prepare the 2.5-mile route from the Upper West Side of Manhattan to Herald Square and Macy’s flagship store at E. 34th Street and 6th Avenue. The event participants include clowns, marching bands, celebrities, performance groups, and a Santa Claus. Over the years, the balloons have been one of the parade’s highlights, with various balloonicles and floats in different designs and sizes.
Some balloons are as high as four-story buildings or as wide as several cabs, all guided by 80–100 handlers and depicting characters as diverse as SpongeBob SquarePants and Spiderman. Trucks, driven by New York City’s Theatrical Teams union, tow the floats. Other highlights include huge amounts of confetti and glitter, and a mile or so of hand-sewn skirt and fringe wraps adorning the floats.