CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The Novant Thanksgiving Day Parade hit the streets of Uptown Thursday morning.

Larger than life balloons, floats and performers filled the Queen City with excitement. The parade has been a beloved tradition for nearly 70 years in the Queen City.

"We're from a smaller city and this is a big city," one parade-goer said. "You've got a variety of everything, the balloons, marching bands... everything."

Leading the way as the parade's Grand Marshal was Grammy Award winner and Charlotte native, Anthony Hamilton.

"It's big man," Hamilton said. "It's Thanksgiving and giving back and they're giving to me so it's a win-win."

There were 97 different elements to the parade, including 17 marching bands.

The mastermind behind the parade is Robert Krumbine, the Executive Director of the Novant Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Krumbine took over the parade four years ago and started thinking of more creative ideas to incorporate.

"Here we are now with a few years under our belt and we build all these things and we come up with these great ideas and we have a great team and have a lot of fun," Krumbine says.

The parade began at 9:30 a.m. Thursday and traveled along Tryon Street through Uptown Charlotte and provided entertainment to start the holiday.