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Metro Brief: Thanksgiving parade plans underway; volunteers needed

Montgomery County

On November 15, 2011

  • Montgomery County is looking for volunteers as it prepares for its annual Thanksgiving Parade.

The local holiday season begins Saturday, November 19 when the 14th Annual Montgomery County Thanksgiving Parade kicks off at 10 a.m. from Ellsworth Drive and Fenton Street in downtown Silver Spring. The parade will travel the same route as last year, proceeding south on Georgia Avenue, ending at Silver Spring Avenue.

 ABC 7 Meteorologist Brian van de Graaff will once again serve as master of ceremonies introducing over 100 parade units. This year's parade will feature some new elements including the Rolling Gingerbread House balloon complete with the gingerbread man. Also new this year is a walking balloon Holiday Nutcracker, an inflatable turkey and an inflatable Rudolph. For the first time, there will be intermittent performances of the Ronald McDonald Magic Show on Silver Spring Avenue near the end of the parade route.

In addition to the giant balloons that have appeared in the parade for many years, there will be a wide variety of marching bands including the ever-popular Washington Redskins Marching Band. The Washington Nationals Baseball Club, dancing groups, beauty queens, clowns, fire engines and a number of rescue animal groups will also participate. As always, the parade will end with Santa's sleigh accompanied by reindeer and elves handing out candy canes to the crowd.

The parade will be held rain or shine and will be broadcast live on News Channel 8. The telecast will be repeated on Thanksgiving Day.

For more information about the parade, call 240-777-6821. Visit to learn about road closures and parking.

The parade is looking for volunteers to be gingerbread men, elves and pilgrims on floats, or to lead giant helium balloons. Volunteers, 10 and older, can hand out candy to the crowd, dress in costume and ride on the floats and act as unit leaders. Hours are from 7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. (volunteers need to be present the whole time) on Saturday, November 19. Volunteers meet at the Silver Spring Civic Building at one Veterans Place at Ellsworth Drive and Fenton Street. 

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