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Featured Video: Riding in America’s Thanksgiving Parade

A rider’s-eye view of what it’s like to ride through the streets of Detroit in one of America’s biggest parades.

By Leslie Potter | November 20, 2016

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Two Thanksgiving parades launched in 1924 and are still running today. The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York is likely the most well known, but we’re going to give the edge to America’s Thanksgiving Parade in Detroit, Michigan. Why? Because Detroit’s celebration has horses.

In this video from last year’s parade, we get a rider’s view of what it’s like to ride with a team from Meadow Reflections Farm of Howell, Michigan. The riders are all mounted on American Saddlebreds decked out in silver parade tack and Christmas-themed accessories. As the parade route goes on, the crowds get bigger and the atmosphere more boisterous, but these equine pros have no trouble handling the task at hand.

According to a recent article from, the Meadow Reflections group will be back in the parade this year, led by the flashy pinto Paddyngton’s Mark of Distinction, called "Marcus” around the barn. Marcus is a champion in the parade division on the American Saddlebred show circuit, but is likely best known for his Breyer model, which was the 2014 Store Special at Breyerfest.

So if you need a break from the giant balloons in that New York parade, or from cooking, or from your family’s political arguing, tune into America’s Thanksgiving Parade on Thursday. A list of TV stations around the country that will be showing the parade is available at

Leslie Potter is a writer and photographer based in Lexington, Kentucky.

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Featured Video: Riding in America’s Thanksgiving Parade

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Reader Comments

Marion    Sussex, NJ

11/24/2017 3:54:01 AM

Well disappointed, didn't see one horse in the Macey's Day Parade yesterday! But then again, I wasn't able to watch the entire parade!

Joy    Somewhere, NH

11/23/2017 3:54:40 AM

Happy Thanksgiving Day today! Hopefully some horses in the parade later on, can't wait!

Marion    Sussex, NJ

11/22/2017 3:55:25 AM

Well tomorrow is the big Macey's parade in NY Can't wait to watch it! Hope to see a horse or two!

Heather    Loveland, CO

10/8/2017 3:52:46 AM

Love all parades and more so the horses! Just can't wait to see them strutting their stuff!

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