Huge crowd, chilly temperatures expected for victory parade


Hundreds of thousands of Seahawks fans are expected to flood downtown Seattle on Wednesday for the NFL champions’ much-anticipated Super Bowl victory parade.

The revelry will officially kick off at 11 a.m., with the route starting just south of Seattle Center at Denny Way. The parade then will travel south down Fourth Avenue past Westlake Park and finish at the north entrance of CenturyLink Field.

Police will shut down Fourth Avenue at 10:30 a.m. and clear the street as soon as possible after the parade wraps up at 1:30 p.m.

Peter Anspach of Tacoma is one of 500,000 or so people expected to attend.

“I want to go up there and shout my head off,” 32-year-old Anspach said Tuesday. “We’ve had to wait a long time for a championship team.”

He’s planning to take his two young nephews, camping chairs and blankets and jump on board a 6 a.m. train so they can stake out a spot close enough for the boys – Caleb, 9, and Owen, 7 – to see the Hawks’ star cornerback Richard Sherman.

“It’s all they’ve been talking about,” Anspach said.

Those planning to join in the festivities are encouraged to bundle up because temperatures are expected to be in the mid-20s, according to the National Weather Service. Temperatures usually are in the 50s this time of year.

Players, coaches, Sea Gals, Blitz the mascot and the Blue Thunder drum line will be driven along the route.

The players will be driven by members of the Washington National Guard, who will be at the wheel of Humvees and other military vehicles. Other people will ride Ducks through the parade, for a total of 25 vehicles, organizers told KIRO-TV.

The amphibious vehicles sit high off the ground and have open sides so spectators will get a good view, said Brian Tracey, owner of Ride the Ducks, a company that gives city tours and is popular with tourists.

Back in 1979, the parade after the SuperSonics won the NBA championship featured open sports cars and vintage classics with the players seated up on the back seat.

Among dignitaries taking part will be Seattle Mayor Ed Murray, King County Executive Dow Constantine and Gov. Jay Inslee.

(In case more reason to raise a ruckus was needed, the governor on Tuesday issued a proclamation proclaiming a “Moment of Loudness” at 12:12 p.m. Wednesday. It called for the 12th Man “to celebrate this momentous Super Bowl win and congratulate the team and themselves by making as much noise as possible for 30 seconds.”)

Officials warned that parking will be limited at CenturyLink Field, and encouraged fans to carpool or take public transportation.

From Tacoma and Lakewood, fans can ride Sounders trains to King Street Station near Pioneer Square. The 59-minute trip costs $4.75 each way for adults.

In addition to the usual runs, a Seahawks parade train will leave the Tacoma station at Freighthouse Square at 8:30 a.m. and Seattle at 2:30 p.m. The train will not make South Tacoma or Lakewood stops.

The first train on the usual schedule will leave at 4:55 a.m. from Freighthouse Square and the last morning train will depart Tacoma at 8 a.m. Departures from Lakewood are 14 minutes earlier. Return trips from Seattle will start at 3:12 p.m. and continue through 6:12 p.m.

From Sea-Tac Airport, Central Link light-rail trains will take fans on a 38-minute trip to downtown Seattle as often as every 7 ½ minutes during peak hours. Adult fares are $2.75 each way.

The Seattle Times contributed to this report.


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