Balloon Pilot Shares Parade Facts

Ironia parent Lou Nisivoccia, a balloon pilot at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, came to Ironia to share his experiences at the parade with Ironia’s third grade students on Nov. 17.

Nisivoccia told students how he has stayed up all night to help inflate balloons the night before Thanksgiving for the past 16 years, and then has been a balloon pilot for many different balloons including Charlie Brown, the Angry Bird and Scrat! the hungry squirrel from the movie “Ice Age.”

Students also enjoyed a special slide show about the history of the parade and asked questions. Third grader Emma Nisivoccia has enjoyed being in the parade on a couple of different floats, she said. Children learned that the parade started out as the Macy’s Christmas Parade and featured animals from the Central Park Zoo as well as toys. The parade was used by Macy’s to promote its toy department, Nisivoccia noted.

Children also learned that Santa Claus has appeared in all 91 parades.

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