If you want to spend Thanksgiving in a historic and vibrant Northeast city, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is the place to be. You will avoid the crowds of New York while still being able to take in an amazing Thanksgiving Day parade. The annual Thanksgiving Day Parade in Philly is a very popular event - the floats feature large inflated balloons similar to those in the New York Macy's Thanksgiving parade. During the parade, kids and their families will see characters from Sesame Street and Disney, Santa Claus, Miss America and the Philadelphia Eagles cheerleaders. Local marching bands play and celebrity guests always surprise locals and visitors by appearing in the parade. The best place to watch the parade is its ending point on the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Many museums and attractions are closed on Thanksgiving Day but reopen for the long weekend. The natural history and science museums in Philly are some of the best in the world, including the Franklin Institute and the Academy of Natural Sciences. Whether it's animal fossils, dinosaurs, anthropology, astronomy, or science that you want to experience, these museums will deliver on all counts. November is also a perfect time to take in an Eagles game (football), a Sixers game (basketball) or a Flyers game (hockey). Philadelphia fans are known for being vocal and loyal, so any sports event in this city is always a good time. Thanksgiving weekend is also ideal for enjoying the many historic sights of Philadelphia, including the Liberty Bell and the Declaration House. It does get cold in Philly come November, so be sure to bundle up wherever you go!