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Thanksgiving parade brings cheer to storm-hit NYC

The Chloe ballon and Spider-Man balloon are inflated for the 86th annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade on New York's Upper West Side, Wednesday, Nov. 21, 2012. More than 3 million people typically attend the event and it has a TV audience of 50 million. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

NEW YORK — The annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has kicked off in New York, putting a festive mood in the air in a city still coping with the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy.

The young, and the young at heart, were delighted Thursday by the sight and sound of marching bands, performers and, of course, the giant balloons. The weather was a sunny 47 degrees. Some parade-goers had camped out to get a good spot, staying snug in sleeping bags. Others came well-prepared with folding chairs.

Chicago, Philadelphia and Detroit were among the other big cities rolling out bands, cartoon character balloons and musical extravaganzas.

Airports, train stations and highways were expected to remain busy Thursday as people made their way home to reconnect with family and friends.

— Associated Press