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Parade Day!

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

World Series Victory Parade

After their historic 108-win season was capped off with a World Series Championship, the Red Sox took to the streets of Boston for their victory parade.  As a season ticket holder, I was invited to the ceremony at Fenway to kick off the festivities.  I didn’t get an invite last time, but I had seen it on TV, and we were excited that we’d get to see the whole team get on the duck boats without having to camp on the street before sunrise just to get a good spot.

The display in the right field concourse that showed photos representing each of the 108 regular season wins was updated to include 11 more from the postseason.

The display in the right field concourse that showed photos representing each of the 108 regular season wins was updated to include 11 more from the postseason. (It was updated some time during the ceremony, because the final photo was missing when we first entered the park. Good thing we walked by it again on the way out!)

The ceremony was fun.  Kicked off by Boston Mayor Marty Walsh and Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, we got to hear from and cheer for Red Sox ownership, President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski, manager Alex Cora, World Series MVP Steve Pearce, ALCS MVP Jackie Bradley Jr., J.D. Martinez, Nathan Eovaldi, Joe Kelly, and Brock Holt.  It ended with a surprise visit from Jerry Remy, who missed the end of the season after undergoing cancer treatments.

Red Sox ownership Sam Kennedy, John W. Henry, Linda Pizzuti Henry, and Tom Werner now have four trophies to cart around to events. But Werner set it down facing to the side, and no one on the stage noticed. From the stands, people yelled out, "Rotate it," as our pictures all looked silly. Finally, one of the photographers on the stage sneaked over and fixed it, eliciting a cheer from the crowd.

Red Sox ownership Sam Kennedy, John W. Henry, Linda Pizzuti Henry, and Tom Werner now have four trophies to cart around to every event. But Werner set the newest one down facing to the side, and no one on the stage noticed. From the stands, people yelled out, "Rotate it," as our pictures all looked silly. Finally, one of the photographers on the stage sneaked over and fixed it, eliciting a cheer from the crowd.

First year manager Alex Cora pulled all the right strings all year long.

First year manager Alex Cora pulled all the right strings all year long.

Nathan Eovaldi got a warm welcome after his impressive performance, pitching multiple innings on back-to-back days as a starter and a reliever, including a record 97 pitches in relief in the 18-inning Game 3. His young son Jace also took to the mic to say, "Let's go, Red Sox!"

Nathan Eovaldi got a warm welcome after his impressive performance, pitching multiple innings on back-to-back days as a starter and a reliever, including a record 97 pitches in relief in the 18-inning Game 3. His young son Jace also took to the mic to say, "Let's go, Red Sox!" (You can also see that the trophies are lined up properly now.)

World Series MVP Steve Pearce, who grew up a Red Sox fan, addressed the crowd.

World Series MVP Steve Pearce, who grew up a Red Sox fan, addressed the crowd.

Brock Holt brought his son Griffin onto the stage.

Brock Holt, who became the first player to hit for the cycle in a postseason game during the Division Series, brought his son Griffin onto the stage.

It was great to see Jerry Remy onstage, and he looked like he was thrilled to be there.

It was great to see Jerry Remy onstage, and he looked like he was thrilled to be there.

We thought we’d get to see everyone board the duck boats inside the park like they’ve done in years past, but they didn’t; the ceremony ended and they went to board the boats in a roped off area outside the park.  From there it was a scramble to find a place where we could see the actual parade.  We ended up dashing up several flights of stairs (and around a barrier that may or may not have been meant to keep us out) to the top level behind the right field roof deck.  That turned out to be a good vantage point to see them all, though we were too far away for them to hear our cheers and acknowledge.

Cue the duck boats! We couldn't find space on the spiral staircase that goes down to the Big Concourse, so we went up to the right field roof deck to overlook the intersection of Ipswich and Boylston streets.

Cue the duck boats! We couldn't find space on the spiral staircase that goes down to the Big Concourse, so we went up to the right field roof deck to overlook the intersection of Ipswich and Boylston streets.

Pedro Martinez, who serves as a special instructor, holds one of the trophies aloft as he rides on a duck boat with Red Sox management.

Pedro Martinez, who serves as a special instructor, holds one of the trophies aloft as he rides on a duck boat with Red Sox ownership.

The duck boat with Xander Bogaerts, Eduardo Nunez, and Eduardo Rodriguez rolls past.

The duck boat with Xander Bogaerts, Eduardo Nunez, and Eduardo Rodriguez rolls past.

Lots and lots of people gathered at the intersection of Ipswich and Boylston, even climbing on the roof of the gas station.

Lots and lots of people gathered at the intersection of Ipswich and Boylston, even climbing on the roof of the gas station.

Heath Hembree, Brian Johnson, Ryan Brasier, Brandon Workman, Tyler Thornburg, and Bobby Poyner go by in their duck boat.

Heath Hembree, Brian Johnson, Ryan Brasier, Brandon Workman, Tyler Thornburg, and Bobby Poyner go by in their duck boat.

Blake Swihart waves as his duck boat passes.

Blake Swihart waves as his duck boat passes.

When the last duck boat passed, we got the brilliant idea to hop on the T and go a few stops up to the Arlington/Boylston area ahead of the parade, and experience it again that way.   (Let the record show that if they had driven all the duck boats inside Fenway so that we didn’t have to go outside to watch the parade, this plan would have worked.)

On te way to the T station, we saw the 2018 banner flying over the John Hancock building. Its weather beacon was lit up with flashing blue and red to commemorate the World Series win.

On the way to the T station, we saw the 2018 banner flying over the John Hancock building. Its weather beacon was lit up with flashing blue and red to commemorate the World Series win.

But unfortunately the T was so packed it was going very slowly.  At both the Copley and Arlington stops, people dressed in Red Sox gear were packing the train because the parade had already passed them.  Not so at Boylston (yet), so we hopped off, ran up more flights of stairs, and saw the last duck boats were just coming through.  Not wanting to give up, we started rushing through Boston Common, dodging food trucks, skateboarders, and dogs in Halloween costumes along the way, trying to overtake the parade.

The duck boats pass by Boston Common, while my mother and I try to outrun a parade.

The duck boats pass by Boston Common, while my mother and I try to outrun a parade.

We (sort of) caught up as Mooke Betts' duck boat passed. In the back of the boat, Tzu-Wei Lin holds up the trophy.

We (sort of) caught up as Mookie Betts' duck boat passed. In the back of the boat, Tzu-Wei Lin holds up the trophy.

We did end up catching the last few players as their duck boats passed the Park Street station, albeit with my telephoto lens.  But hey, no one ever said Championships come easy!

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