Seahawks parade is a 'once-in-a-lifetime opportunity'

POULSBO — It hadn't quite reached 30 degrees outside when Rodney Swenson joined the crowd of Seahawks fans at the Kitsap Transit bus stop on Highway 305, Feb. 5.

Wearing a Seahawks starter jacket and a leather (retro) football helmet, the Kelso man was on his way to the first Super Bowl victory parade in Seattle.

"It's a-once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," Swenson said.

"Been a long time since 1976," he added, referencing the first year of the Seahawks franchise.

Seattle sports teams have won multiple championships. The Seattle SuperSonics defeated the Washington Bullets to win the NBA championship in 1979. Swenson said he didn't make that parade. The Seattle Storm won the WNBA championship in 2004 and 2010.

Throngs of people in Poulsbo waited in the freezing temperatures in hopes of making it to the parade. Busses quickly filled as people headed to the Seattle-Bainbridge ferry terminal.

The Seattle-Bainbridge and Bremerton terminals were experiencing "extremely high passenger ridership," according to the Washington State Ferry bulletin. The ferries were leaving passengers at the terminal so they did not exceed capacity.

Traffic in the south-bound lane of Highway 305 to Bainbridge Island was slowed starting at about 8:30 a.m., Feb. 5. Island traffic was slow, but running smoothly as cars lined up to take the ferry to Seattle. Traffic was stop-and-go beyond the Agate Pass Bridge, however, all the way to Poulsbo.

Seahawks fans were on their way to the 11 a.m. parade just south of Seattle Center at Denny Way. The parade, a victory celebration for the Seahawks' 43-8 win over the Denver Broncos in the Super Bowl, is expected to draw large crowds.

Swenson and the crowd waiting at the bus stop on Highway 305 near Hostmark Street were skipped by one bus, already full of Seahawks fans. Just before 9:20 a.m., the crowd escaped the cold when they were picked up by another bus headed to the ferry.



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