Macy’s Herald Square in New York City arguably launches the holidays, not just for the department store or even retail, but for a lot of people around the world. Its Thanksgiving Day parade does the launching, that is — an event that has been televised since 1948, a year after the movie “Miracle on 34th Street” also helped seal its connection to the season, which remains strong decades on. That close association between a department store and the wonder of the holidays isn’t just a Macy’s thing. It used to be a given everywhere, in each city of the United States. Local department stores went all out at Christmastime, according to Bruce Kopytek, who has written books about their history and maintains the “Department Store Museum” blog. During their heyday, those retailers created special events and spectacles for children and families that didn’t overtly involve shopping. Read more at Retail Dive.