|Fans start lining up for SF Giants parade|
|Written by Admin|
|Wednesday, 31 October 2012 05:47|
Television news footage early in the morning showed people sitting and standing in Giants gear behind barriers set up along the parade route on Market Street in downtown, hoping to stake out a prime spot hours before the parade's 11 a.m. start.
Fans were also gathered at City Hall, where the team will address the crowd after the parade.
With the victory parade coinciding with the spooky holiday, costumed masses are expected to bring an even more festive feel to what city officials stressed will be a family friendly, alcohol-free event.
``This was such a team effort to win the World Series, so we decided we'd get our city team together to make sure we have a great celebration,'' Mayor Ed Lee said Tuesday as he stood with police, fire, transportation and other officials at City Hall.
After the Giants won the Series in 2010, hundreds of thousands of revelers - from school-age children to longtime fans who had waited decades for a championship - crammed into downtown to cheer on their heroes.
This year's parade route is different than it was in 2010, when a vehicle carrying the ``Say Hey Kid'' Willie Mays led players and coaches in open-air buses designed to look like cable cars down the same route that Mays' Giants took in 1958 after relocating from New York.
That route started at Montgomery Street in the Financial District and turned onto Market Street. The 2012 edition will begin at the foot of Market near San Francisco Bay and cover about 1 1/2 miles to City Hall.
Each player will have an open-top vehicle, so fans will get a view from all sides.
San Francisco police Chief Greg Suhr said the parade will last about two hours. He warned people not to even try to drive into the area during the day.
The city spent Monday cleaning up after a rowdy celebration Sunday night turned violent in some neighborhoods and police arrested three dozen people. Bonfires of trash were lit in several intersections, and a $700,000 public transit bus was torched.
The World Series victory parade in 2010 occurred with little incident, and officials said they expect a peaceful encore Wednesday.
``The entire day, 24 hours into the nighttime, no alcohol (on the street),'' Suhr said. ``This is a family celebration, whether it's the San Francisco family with our champion Giants or bringing the little ones in costume, come have a great time.''
Given the anticipated flood of people, officials are increasing public transportation during the parade.
Mayor Lee said the city will provide more trains than it did in 2010.
San Francisco's subway will continue to run through all stations along the parade route; Bay Area Rapid Transit commuter trains will run at rush hour levels all day; and ferries will be running special service throughout the festivities.
Officials also said knockoff merchandise will be confiscated.
``We're working with Major League Baseball to make sure all products being sold outside are ... authorized products, and arrests will be made,'' Suhr said.