Philadelphia goes wild for Eagles

By Brigid Edmunds - [email protected]
Philadelphia Eagles NFL football head coach Doug Pederson, right, and executive VP Howie Roseman walk along the parade route with the Lombardi Trophy during the Super Bowl LII victory parade, Thursday, Feb 8, 2018, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez) -
Philadelphia Eagles NFL football team head coach Doug Pederson points to the crowd gathered during the Super Bowl LII victory parade, Thursday, Feb 8, 2018, in Philadelphia. From left are team owner Jeffrey Lurie and quarterbacks Nick Foles and Carson Wentz. (AP Photo/Michael Perez) -
Buses wait in the early morning darkness in Moosic for passengers to the Philadelphia Eagles’ Super Bowl parade. The buses, which where part of an excursion run by JZ Tours, also picked up Eagles fans in Wilkes-Barre Township and Hazleton. JZ Tours was one of several local companies taking fans to the parade. - Brigid Edmunds | Times Leader
- - Brigid Edmunds | Times Leader
- - Brigid Edmunds | Times Leader
Fans line Benjamin Franklin Parkway before a Super Bowl victory parade for the Philadelphia Eagles football team, Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018, in Philadelphia. The Eagles beat the New England Patriots 41-33 in Super Bowl 52. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon) - - Brigid Edmunds | Times Leader
Philadelphia Eagles NFL football head coach Doug Pederson walks along the parade route with the Lombardi Trophy during the Super Bowl LII victory parade, Thursday, Feb 8, 2018, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez) - - Brigid Edmunds | Times Leader

PHILADELPHIA — Philadelphia’s first Super Bowl parade worked its way up Broad Street on Thursday as hundreds of thousands of deliriously happy Eagles fans jammed the city’s main thoroughfares to celebrate an NFL title many of them never thought they’d see.

Fans clad in Eagles green lined up 20 deep in spots to catch a glimpse of the champs, who rode in open-top, double decker buses. Bundled up against freezing winds, some fans from New Jersey walked across the nearly 2-mile long Benjamin Franklin Bridge just to get into the city.

Numerous fans from Northeastern Pennsylvania were among the sea of green and white that was expected to total 2 million.

JZ Tours, a Scranton company, took five busloads of fans from Luzerne and Lackawanna counties to the City of Brotherly love for the Eagles Super Bowl parade.

“It’s once in a lifetime,” Laura Gipple of Danville, said as she waited for the parade to start.

Gipple traveled to Philadelphia for the festivities with her father, Donald, a lifelong Eagles fan.

Both said they thought they would never see this day, but it was special to share it together. They said “it was a lifetime in the making.”

Led by backup quarterback Nick Foles and second-year coach Doug Pederson, the Eagles beat the New England Patriots 41-33 this past Sunday.

Schools, museums, courts, government offices and even the Philadelphia Zoo will be shut down as the city fetes an underdog Eagles team that few outside Philadelphia thought had a prayer of beating the mighty Patriots. The parade starts near the team’s stadium and, fittingly, ends its 5-mile trek at the art museum steps that Sylvester Stallone climbed in the “Rocky” movies.

Organizers said they’re preparing for as many as 2 million people to jam the parade route. No official estimate was released for the parade after the Phillies won the World Series in 2008, but experts have said that crowd likely didn’t exceed 750,000.

The parade starts at 11 a.m.

JZ announced the tour Monday morning on their Facebook page, and were sold out by Tuesday.

Paulson Tours also ran a bus trip down, and Martz Trailways was advertising its daily Philadelphia routes to Eagles fans who wanted to see the parade.

Fans were playing football, cooking and, of course, enjoying adult beverages as they awaited their heroes.

Updated 8:30 a.m.

Area Eagles fan boarded buses early this morning, headed to a celebration 58 years in the making.

JZ Tours, based out of Scranton, sent five busloads of fans to Philadelphia for the parade celebrating the Philadelphia Eagles Super Bowl victory. The championship was the Eagles first since 1960.

Led by backup quarterback Nick Foles and second-year coach Doug Pederson, the Eagles beat the New England Patriots 41-33 this past Sunday.

Schools, museums, courts, government offices and even the Philadelphia Zoo will be shut down as the city fetes an underdog Eagles team that few outside Philadelphia thought had a prayer of beating the mighty Patriots. The parade starts near the team’s stadium and, fittingly, ends its 5-mile trek at the art museum steps that Sylvester Stallone climbed in the “Rocky” movies.

Organizers said they’re preparing for as many as 2 million people to jam the parade route. No official estimate was released for the parade after the Phillies won the World Series in 2008, but experts have said that crowd likely didn’t exceed 750,000.

The parade starts at 11 a.m.

Northeastern Pennsylvania will be represented well along the streets of the city.

Area residents dressed in their best Eagles attire — from shirts, hats and jackets to midnight green beards — quickly filled the buses in Moosic, Wilkes-Barre Township and Hazleton before sunrise. Once filled the buses headed down the Pennsylvania Turnpike to the celebration.

Although the early morning had most of the passengers more inclined to grab a few hours of sleep, many on the buses reminisced about Eagles games from this season to years ago.

JZ announced the tour Monday morning on their Facebook page, and were sold out by Tuesday.

Paulson Tours also ran a bus trip down, and Martz Trailways was advertising its daily Philadelphia routes to Eagles fans who wanted to see the parade.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

Philadelphia Eagles NFL football head coach Doug Pederson, right, and executive VP Howie Roseman walk along the parade route with the Lombardi Trophy during the Super Bowl LII victory parade, Thursday, Feb 8, 2018, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/web1_AP18039607094689-1.jpgPhiladelphia Eagles NFL football head coach Doug Pederson, right, and executive VP Howie Roseman walk along the parade route with the Lombardi Trophy during the Super Bowl LII victory parade, Thursday, Feb 8, 2018, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)

Philadelphia Eagles NFL football team head coach Doug Pederson points to the crowd gathered during the Super Bowl LII victory parade, Thursday, Feb 8, 2018, in Philadelphia. From left are team owner Jeffrey Lurie and quarterbacks Nick Foles and Carson Wentz. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/web1_AP18039620764401-1.jpgPhiladelphia Eagles NFL football team head coach Doug Pederson points to the crowd gathered during the Super Bowl LII victory parade, Thursday, Feb 8, 2018, in Philadelphia. From left are team owner Jeffrey Lurie and quarterbacks Nick Foles and Carson Wentz. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)

Buses wait in the early morning darkness in Moosic for passengers to the Philadelphia Eagles’ Super Bowl parade. The buses, which where part of an excursion run by JZ Tours, also picked up Eagles fans in Wilkes-Barre Township and Hazleton. JZ Tours was one of several local companies taking fans to the parade.
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/web1_file-2-13.jpegBuses wait in the early morning darkness in Moosic for passengers to the Philadelphia Eagles’ Super Bowl parade. The buses, which where part of an excursion run by JZ Tours, also picked up Eagles fans in Wilkes-Barre Township and Hazleton. JZ Tours was one of several local companies taking fans to the parade. Brigid Edmunds | Times Leader

https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/web1_27901134_10155609568547600_1473984176_o-11.jpgBrigid Edmunds | Times Leader

https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/web1_27845716_10155609577382600_996978583_o-11.jpgBrigid Edmunds | Times Leader

Fans line Benjamin Franklin Parkway before a Super Bowl victory parade for the Philadelphia Eagles football team, Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018, in Philadelphia. The Eagles beat the New England Patriots 41-33 in Super Bowl 52. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/web1_AP18039491118828-3.jpgFans line Benjamin Franklin Parkway before a Super Bowl victory parade for the Philadelphia Eagles football team, Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018, in Philadelphia. The Eagles beat the New England Patriots 41-33 in Super Bowl 52. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon) Brigid Edmunds | Times Leader

Philadelphia Eagles NFL football head coach Doug Pederson walks along the parade route with the Lombardi Trophy during the Super Bowl LII victory parade, Thursday, Feb 8, 2018, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)
https://www.timesleader.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/web1_AP18039607617414-1.jpgPhiladelphia Eagles NFL football head coach Doug Pederson walks along the parade route with the Lombardi Trophy during the Super Bowl LII victory parade, Thursday, Feb 8, 2018, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)Brigid Edmunds | Times Leader

By Brigid Edmunds

[email protected]

UPDATES THROUGHOUT THE DAY

Check back at www.timesleader.com throughout the day for updates, photos and videos.

Reach Brigid Edmunds at 5 70-991-6113 or on Twitter @brigidedmunds.

Reach Brigid Edmunds at 5 70-991-6113 or on Twitter @brigidedmunds.