Red Sox parade overflows Boylston Street with students and fans


Red Sox Manager Alex Cora looks out from a Duck Boat as the Red Sox World Series victory parade moves down Boylston Street. Cullen Granzen / Beacon Staff

By Ziqi Wang and Yiwen Yu

Twenty-five duck boats passed through Emerson’s campus on Boylston and Tremont streets around noon Oct. 31 to celebrate the Boston Red Sox’s World Series victory.

Thousands of people sporting Red Sox caps and jerseys packed the sidewalk in front of campus buildings. Dining Center workers stood on chairs to wait for the champions’ arrival. Construction workers at the Little Building stood on the edge of each floor looking down at the crowded street. People chanted “U.S.A! U.S.A!” as duck boats passed the street and red, white, and blue confetti rained from the sky.

Emerson College Police Department Chief Robert Smith said in a community-wide email that pedestrian traffic on Boylston sidewalks returned to normal levels around 12:30 p.m. ECPD stationed security forces on campus, including 12 Hemenway residence hall. The department brought its night shift workers from 7-2 p.m. to handle the large parade crowds.

ECPD Deputy Chief Eric Schiazza said extra ECPD officers guarded all building doors to guarantee only Emerson students and staff could access the buildings. Campus doors required ID cards for entry. 

“This is the 11th parade we had since 2011,” Schiazza said in an interview. “Nothing that wouldn’t happen during other times ever happened during the parades.”

Some Emerson students and Red Sox fans began to gather outside the school buildings around 10 a.m.—hours before the parade reached campus.

Sophomore Declan Berkeley stood outside with his camera taking videos of the parade. As a Red Sox fan from Massachusetts, he said he had faith the team would pull through and win the World Series.

“We’ve got great men throughout this season, and I knew they were gonna take [the World Series] home,” Berkeley said. “I’m so proud of them.”

Sophomore and native Chicagoan Rhegan Graham said she wanted to join in on the celebration although she roots for the Chicago Cubs.

“I admit it—I’m not a huge Red Sox fan, but I’m really excited to be able to partake in the festivities,” Graham said. “All my classes are canceled, so I get to catch up on studying for midterms, which is nice.”

Chair of Communication Studies Gregory Payne still came to work despite his canceled classes. Payne said his department served hot dogs for the Red Sox Celebration Grill on the second floor of the Walker Building.

“You know, sports unites people when politics and culture and religions sometimes [are] not the best,” Payne said. “In today’s world, especially in such divisive times, baseball allows us, regardless of politics, to come together.”

Students, faculty members, and their families gathered on almost every floor of Emerson buildings facing the street to watch the parade.

First-year graduate student Laura Metter said she enjoyed the experience even though she does not care about baseball. However, Metter said she expected more crowds.

Senior Lecturer Keri Thompson watched the parade from Walker Room 231. She considers herself a Boston sports fan and lifelong Red Sox fan. She said she felt ecstatic when the Red Sox won the World Series.

“This year is also special because the team relied on teamwork to win. Everyone did their job,” Thompson said.

Thompson said her love for the Red Sox runs in her blood and goes back many generations. She said this World Series victory came not long after the last—the Red Sox won the 2013 World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals.  

“I felt spoiled to have a team winning so many championships,” she said.