Astronaut Snoopy and SpongebBob SquarePants Balloons Make First Test Flight for Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade

Astronaut Snoopy and Spongebob Squarepants will make their Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade debut this year with new balloons in the annual event. The new balloons underwent flight testing in New Jersey on Saturday "under the direction of Macy's highly skilled flight management team," according to a press release. "Along with a few hundred handlers, the team will take the balloons out from an outdoor trial run to get firsthand experience flying the new stars ahead of their Thanksgiving Day debuts." It's all in preparation for the Thanksgiving Day main event, which has been a New York City tradition for 93 years.

Snoopy has appeared in the parade before, but this is the first time that the beagle is outfitted for space travel. The press release describes Snoopy's 49-foot-tall, "out-of-of-this-world makeover."

"Decked out in astronaut gear, the newest Snoopy balloon design marks the eighth version of Charles M. Schulz's treasured comic character and honors the 50th anniversary of the moon landing and future space missions," the release states.

Astronaut Snoopy Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade Balloon
(Photo: Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images for Macy's Inc)

Spongebob Squarepants will also make his debut, with Gary the snail riding on his back. Smokey Bear is celebrating his 75th anniversary with the parade.

"Spectacle is synonymous with the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and each year we aim to create an even bigger one than the last, with incredible must-see entertainment for millions of spectators nationwide," said Susan Tercero, executive producer of Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. "Featuring an amazing lineup of high-flying character balloons, jaw-dropping animated floats, world-class marching bands and performance groups, artists covering a variety of musical genres, and of course, the one-and-only Santa Claus, we are 'Parade Ready' and can't wait to take to the streets of New York City to once again herald the arrival of the holiday season."

Spongebob Squarepants Macy's Thanksigving Day Parade Balloon
(Photo: Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images for Macy's Inc)

This year, the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade includes 16 giant character balloons; 40 novelty balloons, heritage balloons, balloonicles, balloonheads and trycaloons; 26 floats; 1,200 cheerleaders and dancers; more than 1,000 clowns; and 11 marching bands.

Snoopy's astronaut appearance also serves as promotion for the upcoming Apple TV+ series Snoopy in Space. The show's official description reads, "Snoopy in Space follows Snoopy as his dreams of being an astronaut become a reality when he and Woodstock tag along with the Peanuts gang on a field trip to NASA and are chosen for an elite mission into space. As Snoopy and Woodstock fulfill their dreams of astronaut training and space travel, Charlie Brown and the gang assist their friends from mission control." You can watch the trailer here.

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Are you excited about the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade? Let us know in the comments. Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade will take play on Thanksgiving Day, November 28th.

Images via Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images for Macy's Inc