They waved, they screamed, they loved. Hundreds of thousands of fans enveloped the U.S. women’s national soccer team in a blanket of adoration Friday, as the team was feted in a ticker tape parade up Broadway and ceremony at City Hall Plaza. The volume of paper raining down was modest in this post-ticker tape era, but the sound volume of the crowd was immense as screams and shouts of “Abby” and “I love you” filled the air.
It was Mayor Bill de Blasio’s show, literally and figuratively. Celebration was the central theme of the day, but politics certainly played a part. In a year defined by the subordinate institutional role and power of the mayor in dealing with the governor and state government this was an unabashed City moment. Mayor de Blasio capitalized on it, with a well-executed parade and an uplifting and well-timed ceremony afterwards.
Governor Cuomo joined in, although seemingly wanting to participate on his own terms. He rode a float with two of the biggest stars, Abby Wambach and Hope Solo, but skipped the mayor’s pre-parade reception for the team and post-parade ceremony in City Hall Plaza. He spoke briefly with the press upon his arrival, but did not see or speak with Mayor de Blasio, hopping into his car just outside the gates of City Hall at the end of the parade.
Update – Parade Video:
Here’s a brief look at the crowd as Abby Wambach passed by.