2019 America’s Thanksgiving Parade in Detroit: What you need to know

Visitor info, how to watch on Thanksgiving

Parade Covearge

DETROIT – The 2019 America’s Thanksgiving Parade in Detroit is Nov. 28!

America’s Thanksgiving Parade presented by Art Van is featured annually on WDIV-Local 4, including a one-hour syndicated national broadcast reaching more 185 major cities across the country. Every November something magical happens on Detroit’s historic Woodward Avenue, a holiday tradition that dates back to 1924.

Every year, hundreds of thousands of Parade spectators line historic Woodward Avenue Thanksgiving morning to watch the larger than life floats, colorful helium-filled balloons, thunderous marching bands, and exciting specialty acts!

How to watch the parade:

  • If you’re in the Detroit area for the holiday, get to a TV and watch the parade on Local 4. Coverage starts at 6 a.m.
  • Even if you’re not in the Detroit area, you still may be able to see America’s Thanksgiving Parade on TV. The parade is broadcast in 185 cities across the U.S. Check your local TV listings.
  • If you’re out of town or on the go, watch the parade and all of Local 4′s coverage right here on ClickOnDetroit.
  • If you have Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire or most smart TVs, download the WDIV-Local 4 app to stream America’s Thanksgiving Parade on your TV.

What to watch for:

Parade lineup:

Stars will shine bright on Woodward Avenue this year in Detroit! The Parade Company announced Monday an official celebrity line-up to appear in the 93rd America’s Thanksgiving Parade. See it here.

Visitor information (road closures, parking, transportation):

Individuals attending the America’s Thanksgiving Parade® presented by Art Van, S3 Turkey Trot and the Detroit Lions game on Thursday, Nov. 28 should make note of street closures, bus reroutes and suggested parking, as tens of thousands flock to downtown Detroit.

The City of Detroit also issues a reminder to Parade watchers that the building of scaffolds and any device without a City permit is prohibited during Thanksgiving events in downtown Detroit on private or public property. Violators will receive tickets and the scaffolds will be removed.


Motorists traveling to downtown Detroit on Wednesday, Nov. 27 and for the parade on Thursday, Nov. 28 should note the following road closures:

Woodward Avenue from W. Grand Blvd. to Warren will be closed completely from Wednesday, Nov. 27 at 1 p.m. through Thursday, Nov. 28 at 2 p.m.

Woodward Avenue from Warren to Jefferson will be shut down beginning at 1 a.m. until the conclusion of the parade on Thursday, Nov. 28. Emergency vehicles will be allowed to cross Woodward Avenue at Warren, Mack/MLK, Alexandrine, Montcalm, and Adams.

The following streets will have limited access beginning at noon on Wednesday, Nov. 27:

  • Amsterdam/Piquette from Cass to John R
  • Harper from Cass to John R
  • Palmer from Cass to John R
  • Ferry from Cass to John R
  • Farnsworth/Putnam from Cass to John R

The following streets will be closed beginning at 5 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 28 and reopen after the S3 Turkey Trot at approximately 10 a.m.:

  • Michigan at Cass
  • Fort Street from Trumbull to Woodward
  • Congress from Shelby to Randolph
  • Larned from Shelby to Randolph
  • Shelby from Congress to Michigan
  • Michigan from Cass to Woodward
  • Monroe from Woodward to Randolph
  • Lafayette Blvd. from Trumbull to Griswold
  • Washington Blvd. from Adams to Congress
  • Atwater from Civic Center Dr. to Third

In addition, the southbound Lodge exits at W. Jefferson/Cobo and Larned Street (Exits 1A & 1B) and the northbound Lodge exit at W. Jefferson (Exit 1A) will be closed during the entire S3 Turkey Trot. The Larned exit will reopen after the S3 Turkey Trot ends.


Individuals coming downtown for the Thanksgiving Day races, Parade, and Detroit Lions game can ride the Detroit People Mover (DPM) operating from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. The fare to ride is 75 cents, but children 5 and under ride free.

All 13 stations will be open, with the closest to the parade being Grand Circus Park, Broadway, and Cadillac. View the DPM system map at www.thepeoplemover.com.

People Mover service will resume at 9 a.m. on Friday, November 29.


As a result of street closures for the Thanksgiving Day events, DDOT customers can expect delays beginning at 6 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 28. Eastside bus routes will layover at the Detroit People Mover’s Bricktown Station on Beaubien north of Larned. Bus passengers are encouraged to ride the DPM at no charge on Thanksgiving Day to continue their travels. Eastside bus routes will resume regular service to the Rosa Parks Transit Center after 6 p.m.

The following bus routes will be affected because of the Thanksgiving Parade:

#7 Cadillac-Harper#10 Chene#25 Jefferson#31 Mack#34 Gratiot#48 Van Dyke

The following routes will be affected because of the S3 Turkey Trot, which takes place from 7 a.m. – 8:30 a.m. These routes will come in and out of town by Michigan via Trumbull:

#19 Fort#27 Joy#29 Linwood

Bus passengers that need to get to the eastside routes from the Rosa Parks Transit Center may ride the People Mover to the Bricktown Station.

DDOT will operate on a Sunday schedule on Thanksgiving Day for all regular routes at regular fares. For more information, please call DDOT’s Customer Service Office at (313) 933-1300 or go to www.RideDetroitTransit.com.

On Thanksgiving SMART will be running their FAST Bus service between city & suburbs with some detours. You can go to the FAST website (http://www.ridesmart-fast.org/) to download the route map & see Thanksgiving day schedules. A direct link to the map can be found here.

Parade route:

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About the Author:

Ken Haddad has proudly been with WDIV/ClickOnDetroit since 2013. He also authors the Morning Report Newsletter and various other newsletters, and helps lead the WDIV Insider team. He's a big sports fan and is constantly sipping Lions Kool-Aid.