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Universal Studios reimagines holiday parade in light of pandemic

How do you keep the festive spirit alive while following COVID-19 guidelines?

What do you do when a pandemic halts the ability to hold a parade and it's the holiday season? You improvise.

The halls have been decked at Universal Orlando and following the theme of 2020, the park had to revisit its holiday celebrations and make them COVID friendly to keep guests safe.

If you've visited the theme park since it's reopening, not a lot has changed.

Socially distant character encounters have become more festive, Christmas music is playing throughout the park, the Grinch has arrived to wreak havoc in Seuss Landing and holiday-themed shows continue to dazzle guests in different areas of the park.

While parades, which can usually draw heavy crowds, have been canceled, there is still a way for families to enjoy the Christmas balloons that Universal has been become known for.

Universal’s Holiday Experience Featuring Macy’s Balloons has taken over for the parade and offers guests an up-close experience with the huge Macy’s balloons and beautiful Christmas floats that usually parade through the park.

This new experience is almost more enjoyable than the parade. Forget being squished on the sidewalk as people crowd around you to get a closer look, there's no need to snag a spot on the sidewalk hours before the parade and best of all, inside you'll be able to meet some of your favorite characters.

You can stop for selfies with characters like King Julien, Puss in Boots and Santa Claus to name a few. All of which will be decked out in their holiday attire. Then again, does Santa own anything but festive clothes?

This new experience is one way to celebrate the seasons during a modified celebration. While it's clear that this parade will not stay inside forever, you should take advantage of the opportunity and visit the experience before it's too late.

You can find the balloons next to Race Through New York with Jimmy Fallon. Just to the left of the building, walk under Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit and you can't miss it.


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