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CM Punk to serve as McDonald’s Thanksgiving Parade Grand Marshal in Chicago
CHICAGO — Millions of parade-goers will kick off Thanksgiving Day amid WWE Champion CM Punk, sky-high balloons, dazzling equestrian units, the nation’s top marching bands, talented dance troupes and the best in varied cultural entertainment. This year’s McDonald’s Thanksgiving Parade will take place live on State St. between Congress Parkway and Randolph St. in downtown Chicago on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 22, from 8 to 11 a.m. CT. For those not on the street for the cherished annual parade, the festivities will be broadcast live on WGN-9 Chicago and WGN America.
Chicago native CM Punk returns this year to spend Thanksgiving morning as the Official Grand Marshal. The Straight Edge Superstar has taken his thrill for living the clean life outside the ring. He has tossed the first pitch at the games of his beloved Chicago Cubs and was the Grand Marshal of the 2008 McDonald’s Thanksgiving Parade. Punk’s hard work has been rewarded as he is living out his dream as one of the longest-reigning WWE Champions of all time. Punk can be seen every week on USA Network’s Monday Night Raw at 8/7 CT.
Originally called the Christmas Caravan in the 1930s, the Parade was created to help lift the spirits of residents suffering through the Great Depression. Since then, it has developed into a full-scale spectacle that celebrates the holiday season. What once started out as an attempt to boost Chicago’s economy has evolved into a cherished holiday tradition for Chicagoans and Americans alike. The Parade includes performers and special guests representing every part of the country, as well as some international visitors such as the Nuremburg Christkindl.
WGN-9 Chicago will air the Parade live and in high definition from 8 to 11 a.m. CT on Thursday, Nov. 22. WGN America will also broadcast the Parade nationally, establishing it as one of only three parades in the country to be covered live, in its entirety, on a national television broadcast (along with Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City and The Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, Calif.). CLTV will rebroadcast the parade from 1 to 4 p.m. CT.