What to Know
- NYC's first ticker-tape parade since the pandemic hit will march along the Canyon of Heroes on Wednesday, July 7, to honor the essential workers who helped guide the one-time epicenter to recovery
- Sandra Lindsay, a Queens nurse who was the first American to receive Pfizer's vaccine in December, will serve as the grand marshal
- The parade will step off at 11 a.m. and stretch along the Canyon of Heroes, though the City Hall ceremony that had been scheduled to end the festivities will be significantly scaled back due to extreme heat
New York City will hold its first ticker-tape parade Wednesday in nearly two years, an emotional trip along Manhattan's iconic Canyon of Heroes that will honor the essential workers who helped guide the one-time pandemic epicenter through the worst public health crisis in more than a century.
Sandra Lindsay, a Queens critical care nurse and the first American to receive Pfizer's coronavirus vaccine in December, will serve as the parade's Grand Marshal.
There will be 14 floats representing 260 different groups of essential workers, making it one of the biggest ticker-tape parades in the city's history.
The groups honored will include:
- Emergency food
- Community care
- First responders
- City workers
- Small businesses and bodegas
- Education and child care
- Hospitality/buildings care
- Advocacy organizations
- Communication and delivery
NYC 'Hometown Heroes' Parade
The parade will step off at 11 a.m. in Battery Park. A City Hall ceremony had been slated to follow the parade but Mayor Bill de Blasio said Tuesday that would be significantly scaled back given the extreme heat expected that day. Additional cooling centers will be set up along the parade route to offer relief, he said.
Fully vaccinated New Yorkers are invited to "come as you are," while those who aren't yet immunized can also show up but should wear masks and maintain 6 feet of social distancing as "best you can," de Blasio said late last week.
"This is outdoors and it's really a moment to celebrate. Without these folks, New York City wouldn't have made it through. It's as simple as that," the mayor said. "This was the biggest crisis in the history of New York City. These are the folks who were the heroes. They're everyday working people. They often don't get the accolades they deserve. Here, we're treating them like, you know, the generals of wars and the astronauts and the champions in different sports."
"We're giving working people the salute they deserve," the mayor added. "If you want to be a part of this absolutely historic parade up the Canyon of Heroes, all are welcome to come and enjoy and see the heroes that we'll be saluting."
De Blasio first announced plans for the "Hometown Heroes" parade on June 14, the same day New York hit Gov. Andrew Cuomo's restriction-erasing vaccine milestone.
Even as the city struggled in the darker days of the pandemic, losing hundreds upon hundreds of New Yorkers a day, de Blasio had vowed that the first ticker-tape that the five boroughs would hold after reopening would be for those everyday heroes.
Everyday heroes like first responders, grocery and food delivery workers, educators and healthcare staff were also the focus of this year's Macy's July 4 Fireworks Spectacular, which returned in full force this year.