Taney Dragons get their parade

Taney Dragons Eli Simon waves to the crowds during the parade for the Taney Dragons in Phila. on Aug. 27, 2014. ( ELIZABETH ROBERTSON / Staff Photographer )
Taney Dragons Eli Simon waves to the crowds during the parade for the Taney Dragons in Phila. on Aug. 27, 2014. ( ELIZABETH ROBERTSON / Staff Photographer )
Posted: August 28, 2014

The Taney Dragons are taking their victory lap around Philadelphia this afternoon.

While the team fell short of capturing the Little League World Series in South Williamsport, it is being feted as winners in Philadelphia with a parade that began at 20th and Market Streets and is headed to FDR Park.

Yes, they are just a bunch of kids playing ball, but make no mistake, said Deputy Mayor Everett Gillison, they have earned our attention and respect.

"They won our hearts and minds," he said. "As long as they are first in hearts and minds, we are always going to tell our kids we believe in you, we support you, and we want to celebrate you when you do well."

The parade will take about two hours. First stop is to be in front of the Kimmel Center, 300 S. Broad St., where the Philly Pops will serenade the team.

Then it will be on to Broad Street and Washington Avenue, where it will be the Mummers' turn to pay homage. Finally the team will roll down to FDR Park for a short program.

The parade's cost to taxpayers will be negligible, Gillison said. The city will put no additional police on duty. Those assigned to the parade will be earning their standard straight-time pay, he said.

The parade will be a "rolling" affair, meaning there will no lengthy street closures. Intersections will be closed only as the parade passes.

Gillison said he was unsure how large a crowd might turn out, given that this late in August there are "probably more Philadelphians at the Jersey Shore than here."

He said he hoped for the team's sake that the crowd would be in the thousands.

Peppered with questions by reporters, Gillison seemed stumped once, and then only momentarily, when one asked if the parade was not "overkill," given that the team had a city-sponsored rally at LOVE Park on Sunday.

"Overkill?" Gillison responded. "I disagree, and so does the mayor. We want to be able to say to our kids you don't always have to be noticed in a negative way. I'll take the criticism that we are doing too much to highlight the positive aspects of our kids any day."


chepp@phillynews.com

215-854-2594

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