A Ruane Thanksgiving Tradition



Natalia Baron, Writer

Thanksgiving is the time to give thanks and to spend time with family. For the Ruane family, Thanksgiving is their time to shine. The Ruane family, from Brooklyn, has gone to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade on 57th Street in New York City every year since 195. That is 65 years and counting. 

This tradition started when Mary Ruane asked her husband to simply take the children out for a couple hours so that she would be able to cook their Thanksgiving meal in peace. Her mother, Mae Murray, worked at the Thanksgiving Parade in the 30’s and suggested that her son in law take the children as well to see the parade that morning in 1954. Their five kids, Kenny, Terry, Tricia, Mary, and Ellen went with their father to this parade and have not stopped since that Thanksgiving in 1954. 

This family went through many important things at this parade including proposals, pregnancy announcements, the deaths of loved ones, and sadly, the destruction of Hurricane Sandy and the 9/11 terrorist attacks. That year, the Ruane family questioned if they should attend. The Ruane family has gone through ups and downs going to this parade, but it has never stopped them from attending. 

Family member, Kenny Ruane, told TODAY, ‘”There’s been good times and bad over all the years, but it’s always a time to reflect and just celebrate being together”’ (Stump). Kenny Ruane wakes up bright and early so he will be able to show up to the parade at 5 am and save a spot for the fifty plus family members. The Ruane family takes the Thanksgiving parade very seriously. 

When it comes to the children, the adults in the Ruane family allow them to cut to the front so they are able to see the marching bands, floats, and the famous large balloons such as Spongebob, Snoopy, and Charlie Brown. 

Attending the parade is a tradition for the Ruane family.Kenny wears a large turkey hat and a large sign that says “Ruane”, so his family won’t have a hard time finding him.

They say that one of the most memorable parades for the family was in 1997 when Tom Sulivan proposed to Terry’s daughter, Debbie, in front of the barricade. Debbie told TODAY, ‘”The big takeaway was that he knew how important it was not just to me, but for us,’.. ‘He did it in style and did this big grand gesture for us”’ (Stump).  

Overall, the Ruane family has amazed many with their Thanksgiving tradition of attending the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade on 57th street. The family has gone through many events good and bad, but nothing has stopped them from going to the parade.