They may not have any plans to visit President Donald Trump at the White House, but the United States women’s soccer team was honored with a ticker tape parade in New York’s famed ‘Canyon of Heroes’ on Wednesday morning.
‘Time to celebrate with everyone who cheered us on all month!!!’ U.S. forward Alex Morgan tweeted hours before the parade was set to begin at 9:30am local time.
U.S. WOMEN’S SOCCER TICKER TAPE PARADE:
The ticker tape parade started at Battery Park and went north along Broadway to City Hall, where the team was honored by Mayor Bill de Blasio.
The city’s first ticker tape parade was held in 1886, when Wall Street workers spontaneously threw ticker tape out of their office windows to celebrate the unveiling of the Statue of Liberty.
The last ticker tape parade was held in July 2015 after the U.S. women’ national team defeated Japan, 5-2, to win the World Cup.
Despite the name, today’s ‘ticker tape’ parades are missing the ubiquitous strips of paper that ran through stock tickers in earlier years.
Instead of ticker tape, about one ton of confetti made from shredded paper, tossed from about 20 buildings, will rain down on the team as they ride in open vehicles up Broadway, according to the Alliance of Downtown New York. Unlike in years past, most of the office towers along the route lack windows that can open.
Dykes on Bikes, the lesbian motorcycle club, got the parade going by leading buses carrying the players out onto Broadway in New York’s Financial District.
The women rode their bikes with signs reading ‘imagine equality’ on the handle bars – a reference to the team’s quest for equal pay with their male counterparts.
On Monday, the team returned home from France, 24 hours after defeating the Netherlands 2-0 in Sunday’s final to clinch a record-extending fourth World Cup crown.
Now, after two days of the team’s celebratory media tour, tens of thousands of fans are lining the streets of Lower Manhattan, where everyone from sports heroes to U.S. astronauts have been celebrated.
Roaring fans lined the same route four years ago to cheer on the U.S. women’s soccer team after its 2015 2015 World Cup win.
Wednesday, floats and an open-top bus brought the team along the route, which ran from Battery Park up Broadway before finally arriving at City Hall for a ceremony hosted by New York Mayor Bill de Blasio.
And like the bikers, De Blasio also made calls for equal play.
The presidential candidate told CNN before the parade that he would call for Congress to pass an amendment within the Amateur Sports Act ‘requiring equal pay for men and women in all of our national sports teams.’
Failing that, De Blasio said, he would use an executive order ‘to force’ the U.S. Soccer Federation to pay its female players equally with the men.
Prior to the parade, team captain Megan Rapinoe addressed the U.S. Soccer staff, thanking them for their hard work throughout the tournament.
‘Everyone who helped make this incredible ride possible,’ Rapinoe’s champagne toast began, ‘it’s probably bigger than this room, but this is ground zero of it all: Thank you from all of the players. We couldn’t do it without you.’
Then Rapinoe added: ‘Let’s f***ing celebrate!’
Later, during the post-parade rally, Rapinoe did not sing the national anthem or place her hand over her heart along with her teammates. The 34-year-old star refused to do either during the World Cup and in previous years, she knelt during the anthem in solidarity with former NFL quarterback-turned social activist Colin Kaepernick, who first started the protests in 2016 to address inequality and racist police brutality.
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U.S. soccer captain Megan Rapinoe poses with New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and his wife during a post-parade rally
Captain Megan Rapinoe and the U.S. Women’s National Team celebrate during the Women’s World Cup championship parade
Young fans line the street during Wednesday’s ticker tape parade in Lower Manhattan
During the post-parade rally, Rapinoe did not sing the national anthem or place her hand over her heart along with her teammates. The 34-year-old star refused to do either during the World Cup and in previous years, she knelt during the anthem in solidarity with former NFL quarterback-turned social activist Colin Kaepernick, who first started the protests in 2016 to address inequality and racist police brutality
Alex Morgan (left), Julie Ertz (center) and Megan Rapinoe (right) share a bottle of champagne during Wednesday’s parade
Fans react as the U.S. women’s soccer team approaches during Wednesday’s parade in New York’s Financial District
Dykes on Bikes, the lesbian motorcycle club, got the parade going by leading the buses carrying the players out onto Broadway in New York’s Financial District. The women rode their bikes with signs reading ‘imagine equality’ on the handle bars – a reference to the team’s quest for equal pay to their male counterparts
Fans call out for U.S. women’s soccer team players at the corner of Cedar St. and Broadway during the ticker tape parade
Megan Rapinoe, Alyssa Naeher, Allie Long and Becky Sauerbrunn of the U.S. with the trophy during the parade
Megan Rapinoe (R) NY Mayor Bill de Blasio, his wife(L) and other members of the World Cup-winning US women’s team take part in a ticker tape parade for the women’s World Cup champions. De Blasio made calls for equal pay on Wednesday
Play Like A Girl: U.S. women’s soccer team fans packed Lower Manhattan to honor the four-time World Cup champs
After striking a similar pose after scoring in the quarterfinal win over France, Megan Rapinoe made her famous stance once again on Wednesday during the ticker tape parade
Megan Rapinoe and Ashlyn Harris pose for pictures during Wednesday’s parade in Lower Manhattan
A shot of New York’s Financial District, where the 2019 U.S. women’s soccer team is being honored for its World Cup victory
An Ali Krieger fan urges the U.S. Soccer Federation to pay its female athletes equally, while pointing out that the U.S. women have four World Cup titles. Meanwhile, the U.S. men failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia
Construction workers in Lower Manhattan look on as the U.S. women’s soccer team are honored for their World Cup win
In the absence of actual ticker tape, a relic from a previous era, recycled confetti rained down on players and fans below from about 20 buildings along the route.
In total, about one ton of confetti was made for Wednesday’s parade.
ABC ‘Good Morning America’ host Robin Roberts was chosen to serve as M.C. for the post-parade rally.
Wednesday’s ticker-tape fiesta is just the first stop on a protracted victory lap that will send the team across the United States in the coming months.
After the New York celebration, the players will jet off to California to appear at the ESPYS, the US sports world’s equivalent of the Oscars, taking place in Los Angeles later on Wednesday.
The team will then be back on the road next month to play in a five-game series of friendly international matches billed as a ‘Victory Tour,’ starting with a clash against Ireland at the Pasadena Rose Bowl on August 3.
With Crowds chanting ‘USA!’ De Blasio was seen riding a float along with Morgan and several other players.
Although the heat index was approaching 90 degrees, the Mayor opted to wear a red ‘Team USA’ scarf during the parade.
Governor Chris Cuomo also attended the parade, and both he and De Blasio made calls for equal pay.
Most of the players are seen wearing their World Cup medals, while Rapinoe, the captain, has been primarily responsible for the trophy.
Two of the team’s 23 players are native New Yorkers. Allie Long, a midfielder from Northport, New York, posted on Twitter about returning to her home state.
With Crowds chanting ‘USA!’ New York Mayor Bill de Blasio was seen riding a float along with Alex Morgan and several other players. Although the heat index was approaching 90 degrees, the Mayor opted to wear a red ‘Team USA’ scarf
Fans call for equal pay after the U.S. women’s soccer team won another World Cup while being paid less than the U.S. men
The parade will start at 9:30am from Battery Park and head north along Broadway to City Hall, according to the Mayor’s office. The Mayor will also honor the team at City Hall
Megan Rapinoe and the U.S. women’s soccer team pose for a picture ahead of Wednesday’s ticker tape parade
Olivia Ciampi, 15, of Rockaway, Queens, who joined the throng with her mother, agreed equal pay for the team was long overdue.
‘They work so hard and they win so many titles and they really do so much and they deserve it,’ she said.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo took it a step further, telling a press conference that if pay is based on performance, the women’s team should be better compensated than the men’s.
‘They play the same game that men soccer players play. By the way, they play it better, with better results,’ Cuomo said. ‘If there’s any economic rationale, the men should get paid less than the women. Let’s be honest!’
HOW DOES NEW YORK CLEAN UP AFTER A TICKER TAPE PARADE?
- 350 sanitation workers
- 130 backpack blowers to corral confetti and other garbage
- 130 hand brooms
- 35 mechanical brooms
- 15 large trash cans on wheels
- 15 rear-loader trucks
- 4 front-loader trucks for heavy lifting
(Source: AM New York)
In March, all 28 players on the women’s team filed a gender discrimination lawsuit against the U.S. Soccer Federation, demanding their compensation equal that of their male counterparts.
‘The level of interest and excitement is much higher from four years ago,’ said Jessica Lappin, president of the parade’s organizers, Alliance of Downtown New York, referring to the 2015 parade for the team after its last World Cup victory. ‘That’s partly because they’re women’s rights icons now.’
Twelve-year-old Aly Hoover, of Glen Ridge, New Jersey, stood at the sidelines Wednesday with a poster of Morgan, one of the team’s stars.
She says that if she sees Morgan in the parade she’s going to ‘scream my head off and try to get a hug.’
The so-called ticker tape parade is named for the long strands of ticker tape that used to be showered down from office buildings. The tape has since been replaced with paper confetti.
Colorful confetti is already drifting down from office buildings as the parade gets ready to start.
Garret Prather brought his newborn son ‘to celebrate how the American women made us proud on and off the field.’
The parade is named for the long strands of ticker tape that used to be showered down from nearby office buildings. The tape has since been replaced with paper confetti, already drifting down from office buildings before Wednesday’s parade started.
After the parade, Democratic Mayor Bill de Blasio planned to honor the team with symbolic keys to the city.
The Department of Sanitation said it will have 350 workers assigned to parade cleanup with trucks, backpack blowers and brooms at their disposal.
Members of the U.S. women’s soccer team, including Megan Rapinoe, rear left, and Alex Morgan, right foreground, stand on a float before being honored with a ticker tape parade along the Canyon of Heroes in New York
A grinning Megan Rapinoe looks down at the crowd during Wednesday’s parade in Lower Manhattan
Soccer fans, including many families, packed into Lower Manhattan on Wednesday morning to see the U.S. soccer team
RAPINOE DEFENDS PROTESTING DURING ANTHEM
By Marlene Lenthang for DailyMail.com
U.S. women’s soccer champion Megan Rapinoe is defending her controversial protests during the national anthem in which she refused to put her hand over her heart in solidarity with Colin Kaepernick during the World Cup, calling it one of the most difficult moments of her life.
‘It was difficult and heavy but I had this immense sense of pride and responsibility in doing that so I think that’s where the strength to do it a number of times came from,’ the team co-captain revealed to CNN host Anderson Cooper Tuesday night.
‘I think that taking care of others, standing up for yourself and other people if they don’t have the ability to do so is very uniquely American,’ she added.
Throughout the tournament she defiantly refused to sing or lift her hands during the anthem, and in years prior used to take a knee as Kaepernick did to protest police brutality and racism, stirring widespread outrage over her ‘disrespect’ for the flag.
Megan Rapinoe of the USA looks on as the rest of the USA team sing the national anthem during the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup
Megan Rapinoe is defending her controversial protest of the national anthem where she refused to put her hand over her heart in solidarity with Colin Kaepernick (center) during the World Cup, calling it one of the most difficult moments of her life
Rapinoe was first white female to follow Kaepernick’s protest when she took a knee before a game in 2016. But in 2017 the U.S. Soccer Federation passed a policy declaring that players must ‘stand respectfully’ during the national anthem, forcing her to alter her protest.
Off the soccer field Rapinoe has become an outspoken critic of the Trump administration, from kneeling during the anthem to refusing Trump’s informal Twitter invitation to the White House.
In June the president initially extended an invitation to the team on Twitter to Rapinoe, but she told Eight by Eight magazine that she would not visit ‘the f***ing White House’ because she objects to the Trump administration.
Since then Trump’s remained mum about an invitation and said to reporters on Sunday ‘We haven’t really thought about it. We’ll look at that’. This week there has been no clarity from the White House.
On Tuesday she revealed she and the team want to go to Washington D.C. and would gladly accept the invitations they’ve received from Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Nancy Pelosi, and Chuck Schumer.
Megan Rapinoe #15 of the U.S. Women’s National Team kneels during the playing of the U.S. National Anthem before a match against Thailand on September 15, 2016
‘This is such a special moment for us…to celebrate with the leaders of our country so yes to AOC, yes to Nancy Pelosi, yes to bipartisan Congress, yes to Chuck Schumer, yes to anyone else that wants to invite us and have a real substantive conversation and believe in the same things that we believe in,’ Rapinoe said.
On Tuesday Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said he looks forward to scheduling a time when ‘these inspiring women can come to the nation’s capital.’
Rapinoe opened up her decision to take a knee an essay for The Player’s Tribune titled ‘Why I am Kneeling’.
‘I don’t think anybody can deny the horrors of racism and Jim Crow and mass incarceration and what’s happening on the southern border and gay rights and women’s rights,’ Rapinoe explained Tuesday.
When asked if she felt like she was disrespecting the flag, the 34-year-old athlete said she did not.
‘I do not. I think that protest is not comfortable ever. It’s going to make people uncomfortable… It doesn’t feel good for anyone, even in those moments kneeling. Those were some of the most crazy, personal moments I’ve ever had. That’s what it takes, progress is hard,’ she said.
When asked if she sees a day in the future when she would stand and put a hand over her heart for the national anthem she said, ‘Yeah, I’m very hopeful for that’.
Cooper then gave her the opportunity to look at the camera and give a message directly to President Trump himself.
‘Your message is excluding people. You’re excluding me. You’re excluding people that look like me. You’re excluding people of color. You’re excluding Americans that maybe support you. I think that we need to have a reckoning with the message that you have about Make America Great Again. I think you’re harking back to an era that wasn’t great for everyone,’ she said.
‘You have an incredible responsibility as the chief of this country to take care of every single person, and you need to do better for everyone,’ she added.
Rapinoe then opened up about her sexual identity and revealed she came out to her family in college.
‘It wasn’t difficult for me in the moment, I didn’t realize it until I got to college,’ leading a laughing Cooper to say, ‘I knew when I was six, how could you not know as a teenager?’
‘It’s so embarrassing because I’m just very gay, I don’t know how it happened but as soon as it clicked I was like ‘She has arrived!” she added.
Rapinoe been with professional basketball player Sue Bird since they met at the 2016 Olympics.
Fans get flags and face stickers ahead of Wednesday’s World Cup parade in New York’s Financial District
Some fans already have their seats near New York’s City Hall, where the parade route ends
Rapinoe raises the World Cup trophy on Wednesday. The U.S. women will be honored at City Hall by Mayor Bill de Blasio
Fans wave American flags before the Women’s World Cup championship parade
A small quantity of confetti sits on the floor of the Downtown Alliance one day ahead of a ticker-tape parade for the U.S. According to multiple reports, around one tone of the shredded paper will drop from 20 buildings during the parade
Soccer fans pack the streets of Lower Manhattan to honor the U.S. women’s soccer team – the 2019 World Cup champions
A man emerges from a delicatessen displaying a spray-painted sign honoring the four-time World Cup-winning U.S. women’s soccer team, one day ahead of a ticker-tape parade and City Hall ceremony for them. The deli was given a ‘Grade Pending’ evaluation from the New York City Department of Health
Team captain made a champagne toast to her fellow players ahead of the U.S. women’s soccer team parade in New York
The U.S. women’s soccer team enjoys some coffee and champagne for breakfast ahead of Wednesday’s parade
Ashlyn Harris gives the camera a glance as she pours champagne for her U.S. women’s soccer teammates
Real estate was in short supply in New York’s Financial District during Wednesday’s parade celebrating the World Cup champs
While the team is feted across the country, the squad has also been held up as champions of gender equality.
The team is suing the United States Soccer Federation to demand equal pay with their male counterparts, and fan chants of ‘equal pay’ cascaded from the stands at the Stade de Lyon after Sunday’s victory.
The outspoken captain Megan Rapinoe has been unafraid to criticize President Donald Trump, saying last month that she would not accept an invitation from him to visit the White House if the U.S. won the World Cup.
Trump responded by tweeting that Rapinoe should ‘win first before she talks.’
Megan Rapinoe carries a champagne flute and a World Cup trophy during Wednesday’s ticker tape parade in New York
Speaking to ESPN on Tuesday, Rapinoe noted she had ‘held up my end of the bargain on that one’ before adding that the Twitter exchange with Trump had actually helped the team in France.
She also reiterated that she would not be going to the White House, saying on CNN’s ‘Anderson Cooper 360’ that: ‘I would not go and every teammate that I’ve talked to explicitly about it would not go.’
‘I don’t think anyone on the team has any interest in lending the platform that we’ve worked so hard to build and the things that we fight for and the way that we live our life, I don’t think we want that to be co-opted or corrupted by this administration.’
In a Twitter tirade directed at Rapinoe, Trump had initially invited the team to the White House ‘win or lose,’ but seems to be walking that offer back now.
When asked about a potential meeting on Sunday, Trump replied: ‘We haven’t really thought about it. We’ll look at that.’
Meanwhile, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (NY) took to the Senate floor on Monday and invited the women’s team to the upper chamber.
‘That’s great,’ Rapinoe told reporters in response. ‘I love that. Interested to see what McConnell does. Thank you, Chuck Schumer, for inviting us out. We are very happy to accept your invitation to come.’
Schumer used the opportunity to call for closing the gender pay gap. He also called on Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to allow a vote on the floor.
‘While today we celebrate their victory, we also recognize that these women, these athletes, have challenges and they make us really think about the future of women’s sports,’ Schumer said on Monday.
U.S. women’s soccer fans arrived at Wednesday’s parade wearing face paint and sporting Team USA jerseys
Mallory Pugh posted an Instagram video before Wednesday’s parade while teammate Samantha Mewis played piano
New York City police officers on patrol before the Women’s World Cup championship parade
Workers prepare City Hall, decorated with banners in preparation for a ceremony with Mayor Bill de Blasio and other dignitaries scheduled to follow Wednesday’s parade for the four-time World Cup winning U.S. Women’s soccer team
The last ticker tape parade was held in 2015 after the U.S. women’ national team defeated Japan, 5-2, to win the World Cup
After a hard-fought World Cup campaign, complete with drama on the pitch as well as a swell of controversies off of it, the American players took time to cool off atop an exclusive NYC rooftop pool and bar ahead of their parade in the city on Wednesday.
Morgan shared a snap of her and teammate Kelley O-Hara floating on matching Inflatable donuts at the James Hotel on Tuesday afternoon, with the pair clutching cocktails as they laughed towards one another.
The tournament’s Golden Ball winner and co-winner of the Golden Boot trophy, Rapinoe, was videoed dancing poolside along with Ashlyn Harris and Crystal Dunn, with a clear view of the One World Trade Center providing a stunning back-drop.
Morgan said that during the flight back home, the team was able to bond thanks to lack of Wifi internet access.
‘Initially everyone was excited and then a little hungover and then we slept a little bit. Then we got up and started celebrating a little more and sharing memories,’ she said.
‘This starts an amazing three days and we need to just release all that emotional, physical exhaustion that we’ve had over the past 30 days … now we just get to enjoy each other’s company.’
Vice-captain Alex Morgan shared a snap of her and teammate Kelley O-Hara floating on matching Inflatable donuts at the James Hotel on Tuesday afternoon
The tournament’s Golden Ball winner and co-winner of the Golden Boot trophy, Megan Rapinoe, was videoed dancing poolside along with Ashlyn Harris
Morgan sips a cocktail as she floats on the water at the exclusive NYC rooftop pool and bar
Morgan poses in front of the $100 million yacht owned by billionaire Rick Caruso
‘This will be epic’: Ali Kreger snaps an video of the incredible boat, which embarked on a tour around Manhattan
A file photo above shows Caruso’s vessel in all its glory – ‘Invictus’ is a 216ft mega yacht
They declared soccer a ‘female-dominated sport’ and said they would continue to keep fighting to be paid equally to their male counterparts