Parade Day, November 3rd, 2010
I got to the city at 6:30am, parked in my favorite parking structure, and walked most of the parade route. Big orange banners and balloons were going up on Montgomery Street and traffic was already starting to jam up at the corner of Montgomery and Market. I didn't try to get a press pass, so I had to wing it and just have fun.
The First Banner Going Up
Fans arriving Early
The goal was to experience the "confetti" and "ticker-tape" snow-storm back-lit by the sun, along with the feeling of being in a canyon of tall buildings. Hopefully, I could also take cool photo's and see the faces of the players and management. I ended up compromising just a bit, due to the masses of people in orange and black, the barricades, and my attraction to the confetti cannons (confetti in black bags).
The bags of confetti
So, after walking around a bit, I ended up standing for 2 hours on Montgomery Street, just a bit south of Post St, on the N.W. Corner of Montgomery and Post which was also near the intersection of Market. This was definitely "the" corner with big energy and TV cameras, as the parade route took a big right hand turn there - onto Market St. The parade route was 1 1/2 miles long and started at the intersection of Montgomery and Washington. It traveled south on Montgomery, took a right hand turn onto Market and then eventually took another right onto McAllister, which dumped into the Civic Center and City Hall area. This was the same route that Willie Mays and the "NEW" SF Giants Parade took back in 1958.
The parade was to start at 11:00 am, but ran a little late. To my left was Montgomery Street heading north, a "World Series Champions" orange banner crossing high above the street, thousands of screaming fans and a couple of confetti cannons.
To my left
To my right was the big right hand turn at Market St., most of the planted TV cameras, thousands of screaming fans and a very bright sun.
To my right
In front of me, was the Fidelity building. It's "wicked witch" green glass was screaming as were all the people. The Wells Fargo building was about 8' behind me. I got great shots of a business man wearing a white SF GIANTS jersey.
In front of me and behind me
The only way to get a decent photograph was to hold the camera up in the air and aim. The scene was half in the sun and half in the shade. Not a good thing. Composition took a back seat. It was impossible to change lenses, so I stuck with my 28-70 zoom. The ONLY thing that was annoying during the entire day, was the tall, aggressive, very middle aged corporate woman with blond bob standing next to me. She was sporting her white SF Giants jersey over corporate black slacks, and kept screaming "woooo-hooo" directly into my right ear, like a 10 year old boy.
The actual parade consisted of: marching bands, cars, a few floats, sponsors, and mostly anyone that worked for the SF Giants. Management,VIPS and the historic famous players traveled in classic vintage cars. (two of them broke down in the parade, as the confetti got into the engine). The players rode in motorized cable cars, two to a car. The guys were elevated just enough for the crowd to see. A crowd I'm estimating to be around 750,000.
The Event Staff
Peter Magowan Family
Bruce Bochy's car coming with media
Manager Bruce Bochy with trophy
The first player car comes into view
Aaron Rowand, wearing a black Giants Championship t-shirt, was hanging off the top step of his cable car, just like a city regular. A big smile and wave of his right hand.
Cody Ross, on the same cable car as Aaron and actually in the back under the Aaron signage while Aaron took control of the front, was all teeth and smiles and black sunglasses. Both hands up and waving.
Madison Bumgarner, wearing big reflector sunglasses, held is hands up to the crowds.
The next car held Nate Schierholtz and Travis Ishikawa. I didn't see Travis, as he was on the other side of the cable car, but Nate was all smiles, hanging off the bottom step, grabbing the pole and waving to the fans.
Juan "Uh-Ribe" was next. He was waving to the crowds and had a SF Giants white towel around his neck. I missed who was the other player on that car.
Pablo Sandoval was on the next car, but people's hands were in the way. I missed who was on the back end of his car, and the next cable car.
Matt Cain was in the next car in the back, under the Barry Zito signage, while Barry must have been in the front of the car. Matt, in a grey t-shirt and jeans was hanging over the rail filming with his little video camera.
The next cable car held Freddy Sanchez and Ryan Rohlinger. Both with video camera's in hand where hanging over the edge of the railings, smiling and laughing. Both were in the back of the car. Both had big mirrored sunglasses on.
Up next was Guillermo Mota and Ramon Ramirez. Guillermo was into his flip video camera, while Ramon proudly held up a GIANTS scarf to the crowds of screaming fans.
Andres Torres was next. He looked model perfect, holding up his number one finger. He wore a white t-shirt, jeans, silver necklace and big sunglasses. He looked super cool.
I missed the next two cars, unfortunately.
Then, as the screams seemed to gain strength, I cable car emerged into the sunlight with Brian Wilson's face, arms and hands plastered to the front glass window. It was such a cool visual.
Brian Wilson against the glass
Within moments he jumped off his cable car and ran off down Montgomery heading south into the TV cameras and Market Street. He was surrounded by media and security. Wilson was truly embracing the moment, as was his super black beard and mohawk. Here's the link to his strange video interview with "the machine" doing a walk on.
Up next was Buster Posey. He waved to the crowds with a big sincere smile, as his wife Kristen stood to his left. I missed the player that was in the back of the car.
Pat Burrell was in the next car, but seemed to be on the east side of the vehicle, so I missed seeing him. Sharing his car was Aubrey "thong" Huff. He was playing with the special "rally thong" and a big, silly smile was plastered on his face.
There seemed to be a little confusion after Mr. Thong's cable car passed. Then all of a sudden, the crowd got very loud, I saw Mr. Timmy Jim "the freak" Lincecum climbing over the wooden benches in his cable car, over to my side. He was in the rear, waving and smiling and taking it all in. Red Bull hat, black championship t-shirt and jeans. He's so cool. I also noticed the woman photographer riding along in his cable car, shooting his every move. It was Deanne Fitzmaurice. She use to shoot for the SF Chronicle and I have exchanged emails with her in the past. I love her photography and ended up buying one of photographs of Bono coming into the lobby of the SF Chronicle building. I look forward to contacting her, and showing her the photographs I took of her in Tim's cable car.
Tim Lincecum and Deanne on the left taking photos
Edgar Renteria was in the very last player cable car. He had that gray and black knit hat on, and waved a big smile to the adoring crowds. I guess I missed the player that was also in his car because of Timmy.
That was it. I wanted to race down Market Street, chasing the parade all the way to City Hall, but I was sort of at a stand still as there was about 600,000 people in the way.
Crowds at Montgomery and Market and Post
Market Street looking towards the Ferry Bldg
In the end, I didn't get my "back-lit" lighting, but I did get to see the players eyes and experience the confetti snowstorm. It was amazing and breath-taking! Also, I'm glad that I focused on the parade and not the actual "ceremony" at City Hall, where Mayor Newsom gave the GIANTS the key to the city. I watched that whole ceremony in the bar, at the Westin St. Francis. After I left the hotel, I headed towards Market Street with hopes of taking more photo's, but it seemed the crowd had "changed", and I felt uncomfortable, so I headed for my car. I was lucky enough to leave the parking structure before some of the closed cross roads were back open, so I got home really fast with no stopping. Later that night, while watching all the TV coverage, I realized that what I should have done, was driven to the ball park, and met the players as they got of the big buses that brought them back from City Hall. Oh well, next year.
See SF Chronicle photographs at: SF GATE