Boston readies duck boats, umbrellas for Patriots' victory parade
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[February 07, 2017]
By Scott Malone
BOSTON (Reuters) - Hundreds of
thousands of New England Patriots fans are expected to brave snow
and rain on Tuesday to try to catch a glimpse of the Super Bowl
champions as they parade through Boston on World War Two-style
"Fire up the duck boats," was the rallying cry of Mayor Marty Walsh
as the city prepared for its fifth National Football League
championship parade since 2002, following Sunday night's stunning
34-28, come-from-behind overtime victory over the Atlanta Falcons in
"We certainly have what I would say is the greatest football
franchise in NFL history," Walsh told a news conference at City Hall
on Monday. "They made Boston and New England proud yesterday."
The parade will begin at 11 a.m. (1600 GMT) at the Hynes Convention
Center, cross the finish line for the Boston Marathon, which was
freshly painted on Monday, and end at City Hall.
Walsh advised parade-goers to dress for the forecast of cold weather
with a mix of snow and rain, and warned students that schools
throughout the city would be open as usual.
Many could be counted on to wear jerseys bearing No. 12, honoring
quarterback Tom Brady, who along with head coach Bill Belichick, is
credited with steering the team through the most successful period
in its 57-year history.
"We can officially retire all arguments about Greatest Of All Time.
Brady is the greatest quarterback. And Bill Belichick is the
greatest coach," wrote Boston Globe sports columnist Dan
Shaughnessy, who noted that the game "might very well be the
greatest moment in Boston sports history."
[to top of second column]
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell (L) presents New England Patriots
quarterback Tom Brady (R) with the Pete Rozelle Trophy as Super Bowl
LI most valuable player at the George R. Brown Convention Center.
Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Walsh said security would be high throughout the city on parade day,
with sand-filled dump trucks blocking key intersections off the
route to prohibit a vehicle-mounted attack. Boston has ratcheted up
security at public events since the deadly 2013 bombing attack on
the Boston Marathon.
The Patriots' victory capped a season that began with Brady serving
a four-game suspension for using under-inflated footballs during the
2015 playoffs, a scandal nicknamed "Deflategate."
The 31-foot (9.5-metre) duck boats, which normally carry sightseers
through the city's narrow streets and along the Charles River, have
become a fixture of the city's 10 major pro sports championship
parades this century, which include three for baseball's Red Sox and
one each for the National Hockey League Bruins and National
Basketball Association Celtics.
(Reporting by Scott Malone; Editing by Peter Cooney)
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