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February 4, 2014 at 11:25 AM

Police now say up to 500,000 expected for Seahawks parade

A Ride the Ducks vehicle. (Photo by Alan Berner / The Seattle Times)

A Ride the Ducks vehicle. (Photo by Alan Berner / The Seattle Times)

The Seahawks parade is slated to start just south of Seattle Center, at Denny Way, at 11 a.m. Wednesday. Spectators should be prepared for a crowd of up to 500,000 people, and they should bundle up, because it’s going to be downright freezing.

Temperatures along the downtown parade route are expected to be in the mid-20s, says the National Weather Service. Typically, temperatures hover near 50 degrees this time of year.

From Seattle Center, the parade will travel south down Fourth Avenue, past Westlake Park, and finish at the north entrance of CenturyLink Field, according to the Seahawks.  There will be limited parking availability at CenturyLink, so fans are encouraged to carpool and use public transportation.

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray said this morning that the city expects some 300,000 people will show up for the parade. But several hours later, police spokeswoman Renee Witt revised that figure to say that officers are preparing for 500,000.

“We just want to be prepared,” Witt said. “People need to bring their patience. Just know there will be a lot of traffic and it will be cold.”

Along with the mayor, participants in the parade include players, Coach Pete Carroll, members of the coaching staff, Seahawks executives, Sea Gals, Blitz and the Blue Thunder drum line, Gov. Jay Inslee and King County Executive Dow Constantine.

Open-roof military vehicles and Ride the Ducks vehicles will carry players, coaches, other dignitaries and the Sea Gals the length of the parade route.

The amphibious Duck 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. Tracey anticipated that 11 Ducks would be needed for all the Seahawks but said the final number is in flux.

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

Seattle Police Department will close Fourth Avenue at 10:30 a.m. for the parade. Police say they will reopen the roadway as soon as possible.

King County Metro said the parade will affect all routes that travel along or near Fourth Avenue. More information can be found here.

Following the parade, a celebration is planned inside CenturyLink Field. Season ticket holders had until noon to reserve tickets to the general admission event. Those who reserved tickets can print them through this evening. Tickets to the event are already showing up on Craigslist along with requests by people who want to buy them.

For non-season ticket holders, Safeco Field will also open Wednesday to show a live feed of the victory parade and CenturyLink Field’s on-field celebration on the ballpark’s video boards. The field is now at capacity, the Mariners said. No one will be admitted to the stadium without tickets, which were available online on a first-come, first-serve basis.

CenturyLink and Safeco gates will open for ticket holders at 10:30 a.m. and the celebration is expected to begin at 1 p.m. Parking will be extremely limited.

A live stream will also be shown on

Seattle Schools will be open tomorrow, however Seattle Public Schools superintendent Jose Banda notified the district’s principals Tuesday afternoon that it will be up to them to decide whether to grant excused absences for students who attend the Seahawks victory parade on Wednesday.

Several districts in the area, including Highline, Northshore and Lake Washington,  are offering excused absences to students who attend the parade with their parents’ permission.

Some Seattle school bus traffic is expected to be affected by the parade, and the district is working with the city of Seattle to limit disruptions. That said, families should expect bus delays Wednesday afternoon.

Share your photos!

If you’re planning to go on Wednesday, don’t forget to share your pictures of the event — or of you in your celebratory attire — with us and other readers.

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Comments | More in General news, Sports, Traffic & Transit | Topics: Gov. Jay Inslee, Mayor Ed Murray, parade


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