A pair of local sisters have jumped their way into the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Carson and Parker Carnahan are two of 200 jump ropers from around the country who will perform in the 87th annual parade in New York on Thursday.
They will jump the entire length of the 2.5-mile course while performing tricks along the way. When they arrive in Herald Square, they will perform a live one-minute segment that will be broadcast on NBC.
“I’m excited to be in such a big performance that people from all over watch,” said Carson, 13, who is an eighth-grader at The Franciscan School in North Raleigh. Parker, 16, who is a sophomore at Ravenscroft, said she’s just hoping not to mess up.
A crowd of about 3.5 million people is expected to gather for the parade, and another 50 million will watch on television.
The sisters are both members of the Central Spinners Jump Rope Team. They answered a call for applications to perform in the parade and were selected from a pool of about 400.
To prepare for the performance they watched videos of the routine, and they will head to New York a few days before Thanksgiving to get in some extra practice. The Heartbeats Jump Rope Team in Cleveland choreographed the routine, and the jump ropers will perform under the name Jumpers United for Macy’s Parade.
Carson and Parker have been jumping rope for about seven years. Their mother, Nancy Evans, coaches the Central Spinners and is the athletic director and a sixth-grade social studies teacher at The Franciscan School. The family lives in Durham.
Carson said that she likes the balance of creativity and competition that goes into jump roping. There are routines to design and tricks to master but also chances to go head to head with other teams.
“It’s competitive at times, but other times it’s everyone working together and sharing ideas,” Carson said.