The Parade Company Gears Up For Thanksgiving Day

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DETROIT (via WWJ) - There’s never a dull moment at The Parade Company, especially as the deadline ticks closer to Thanksgiving.

WWJ’s Kathryn Larson caught up with The Parade Company’s Artistic Director David Danielson, who was unveiling this year’s Art Van float.

Danielson said this year’s parade theme is “So Much To Believe In.”

“It’s kind of like, what are we going to do, not so much if we can make this happen,” he said. “The hardest part about putting it together is trying to figure out how to do it, for one thing. Each float, even though we’ve built so many of them, they’re all so different, we kind of have to invent every part of it.”

Danielson said the Art Van float is built on a steel frame and is completely safe.

“It’s definitely safe. You can see we’ve got railings, air bags, yeah, it’s nice and soft, very soft. You can take a nap on it if you want, we’ve got a bed.”

And if you think the floats seem impressive and incredibly detailed, that’s because thousands of hours of manpower went into creating them.

“Welders, carpenters, sculptors, painters… people with theatrical backgrounds, metalsmithing, mechanics and probably cycled through the studio, hundreds of volunteers,” said Danielson.

And after a month and half, the float got the gold star approval at the big unveiling.  But there will be no time for sleeping anytime soon, as Danielson and his team are shifting their efforts to the next big parade piece.

“In the past we’ve built really cool stuff and we’d send it off to a trade show or off to some other state, and pack it up and you never see what happens with it. Here, it’s very gratifying to see it go down the parade route and see everybody’s faces at the end,” he said.

America’s Thanksgiving Parade, one of the country’s oldest and most celebrated parades, will step off at 9:20 a.m. on Woodward Avenue and Mack and end at Woodward Avenue and Congress in downtown Detroit on Thursday, November 24.

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