Mile of Smiles

The Most Fun You'll Have In A Mile

The Thanksgiving Day Parade has been a holiday tradition in Charlotte since 1947. Over nearly seven decades, hundreds of thousands of participants, volunteers, sponsors, families and friends have centered their Thanksgiving traditions around this parade.

What began as a local holiday parade has grown into a magical showcase of performances, floats, dignitaries, celebrities, marching bands, balloons and surprises. Today, the parade is broadcast into 1.5 million homes from around the region, providing the gift of entertainment and joy to young and old.

In 2013, it appeared the parade and scholarship program would cease to exist. However, through the generous support of new title sponsor Novant Health, the parade was given new life and rebranded as the Novant Health Thanksgiving Day parade. The 67th parade attracted its biggest audience yet: more than 100,000 attendees on-site and more than 180,000 television viewers. New performances and floats were added to existing parade favorites for an unforgettable Thanksgiving event.

In 2018, the City of Charlotte marks its 250th anniversary, and the parade will recognize this historic occasion with a special float for CLT250, the yearlong, citywide celebration that invites all residents to reflect on the city’s past, present and future.