This year's Macy's balloon inflation marks the end of an era for an Eyewitness News tradition

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Thursday, November 23, 2023
Cub reporter Jacob Einiger breaks down this year's Thanksgiving Parade floats
Josh Einiger gets some help from his son Jacob to break down this year's Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade floats.

NEW YORK (WABC) -- You know the saying, "the kids grow up so fast"? Well, that phrase held an even bigger meaning for the Eyewitness News family at Macy's famed Thanksgiving Parade balloon inflation on Wednesday.

Every year, for more than a decade, Eyewitness News reporter Michelle Charlesworth's children Jack and Isabelle give a behind-the-scenes look at the balloon inflation festivities on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.

But this year, it also marked their final report.

On Wednesday, Jack and Isabelle passed the torch and introduced the newest Eyewitness News cub reporter Jacob, the son of our reporter Josh Einiger.

Together they highlighted the balloons that will be floating in Manhattan, including six featured character helium balloon stars and 32 novelty and heritage inflatables.

Michelle Charlesworth's kids pass the baton to Josh Einiger's son.

One of those floats, a Minion balloon, appeared to suffer a small leak, which Jacob promptly investigated.

"Things happen. They're balloons but they usually are able to handle it pretty good. We rarely lose a balloon for the parade," Linda Volkommer said.

This is Volkommer's 38th year working on the parade. She says she never misses it.

"To see people so happy. Look at the children with what's going on in the world? Look at this. And everybody's laughing and smiling. You go home happy," Volkommer said.


The new class includes Beagle Scout Snoopy by Peanuts Worldwide; Blue Cat & Chugs by Cool Cats, a digitally native character; Kung Fu Panda's Po by Universal Pictures' Dreamworks Animation; Leo by Netflix, Inc.; Monkey D. Luffy by Toei Animation Inc.; Pillsbury Doughboy by Pillsbury; and Uncle Dan by Illumination.

RELATED: Street closures due to the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade


Beagle Scout Snoopy (NEW)

Smokey Bear

Diary of A Wimpy Kid

Bluey & Keepy Uppy Balloon

Blue Cat & Chugs (NEW)

Baby Shark

Spongebob SquarePants & Gary

HF Sinclair's Baby Dino Ballonicles

HF Sinclair's Dino




Go Bowling Balloonicles

Ronald McDonald

Chase from PAW Patrol

Stuart the Minion

Uncle Dan (NEW)

Funko Pop! inspired Grogu

Monkey D. Luffy (NEW)

Kung Fu Panda's Po (NEW)

Red Titan

Pillsbury Doughboy(NEW)

Pikachu & Eevee

RELATED: More to know about the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade


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