Crowds roar, bells ring out in NYC as Yankees feted with ticker-tape parade, keys to city

By Verena Dobnik, AP
Friday, November 6, 2009

Crowds roar, bells ring out as NYC fetes Yankees

NEW YORK — Crowds roared, church bells rang and streams of paper rained down on Broadway as the New York Yankees celebrated their 27th championship Friday in a way only this city can, with a parade up the Canyon of Heroes.

The players, joined by celebrity fans, drank it all in as they rode on floats and double-decker buses through Manhattan’s financial district.

It has been years since the city used actual ticker-tape to celebrate its World Series wins, but the experience was still authentic to the many thousands who crammed the sidewalks near Wall Street.

“I love it!” said city sanitation worker John Freeman, as he raked up confetti and toilet paper rolls thrown from skyscrapers.

Whole families skipped work and school to be there. Players recorded the crowd with their cameras as the rode, en route to a second celebration at City Hall, where the mayor presented the players with keys to the city.

Players took the stage as “We are the Champions” blasted on loudspeakers. Shortstop Derek Jeter carried the trophy, hoisting it high above his head while the crowd screamed.

“It’s been too long, hasn’t it?” he told the crowd, a reference to the team’s eight-year absence from the top of the sport. “It feels good to be back.”

And, in classic New York style, both fans and players let it be known that they didn’t plan to relinquish their title anytime soon.

The crowd at City Hall chanted “28.” Manager Joe Girardi said he had already talked on the phone with George Steinbrenner about not letting up next year.

“He told me this morning … the only thing greater than this celebration is doing it two years in a row,” Girardi said. “So he asked me to remind everyone, pitchers and catchers report in 96 days. Be ready to defend it.”

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