Archive for Thursday, April 10, 2008

Sunday parade set for champs

April 10, 2008


Championship parade set for Sunday

Lawrence certainly loves a parade, and late today, Jayhawk fans learned they'll have one this weekend. Enlarge video

Past Event
Celebration parade for KU men's basketball team

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Tune in

Sunday's downtown Lawrence parade for the Kansas University men's basketball team will air live at 3 p.m. Sunday on Sunflower Broadband Channel 6. Replays will be aired at 9 p.m. Sunday, 10:30 a.m. and 7 p.m. Monday and 5 p.m. Tuesday.

The celebration will be available for one week on Sunflower Broadband Video on Demand, which can be accessed through Channel 1.

2008 NCAA Tournament

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The streets couldn't hold them all.

Perched atop roofs of Massachusetts Street buildings were Kansas University flags that flapped on a bright spring day, balloons that drifted as high as the spirits of a town, and - most importantly - there were Jayhawk fans taking in a sight unlike any they had seen before.

Below, 60,000 of their friends crowded Mass. Street to the point that the main drag was reduced to a wide sidewalk. There was enough room, however, for Cinderella - the real one from Disneyland - to make her way through the masses and introduce Lawrence's newest royalty.

Their names? Well, the town had grown fond of calling them Danny and the Miracles.

It was April 13, 1988 - the last time the town had occasion to put on a National Championship parade.

Downtown restaurant owner Bob Schumm told a television reporter on that day that they were partaking in a historic event. But he threw in a quick addition.

"But," Schumm said, "it will be repeated soon."

Well, he was half-right.

The wait was two decades, but Kansas University and Lawrence will have another National Championship parade on Sunday.

Leaders with the Kansas University athletics department announced Wednesday afternoon that KU's National Champion basketball team will be honored on Sunday at a 3 p.m. parade that will run along Massachusetts Street from Seventh Street to South Park.

At 6 p.m. Sunday, the basketball team also will have an awards ceremony at Allen Fieldhouse. The event is free and open to the public. Doors to the Fieldhouse will open at 5 p.m.

Jim Marchiony, assistant athletics director for KU, said the athletics department decided Wednesday to move ahead with a parade after having time to catch its breath following Monday's National Championship game.

"We started getting some comments last week about a parade," Marchiony said. "We know that there are people out there who would love to see a parade. I think our players and coaches feel the same way."

Chancellor Robert Hemenway also said he had received messages from "a lot of people" asking for a parade.

Jayhawk fans from both near and far were clamoring for a parade earlier Wednesday.

"I don't have the most money in the world," said Mike Hoffman, a 2001 KU graduate living in Chicago. "But I told myself that if they get that National Championship, I'm going to make that trip. I don't care if gas is $7 a gallon. I'm driving to Lawrence for a parade."

Peggy Johnson, a Lawrence financial adviser and former downtown doughnut shop owner, helped organize the 1988 parade. She said the event will help the town revel in the Jayhawks' success.

"It really lets the town be part of the celebration," Johnson said. "The university has its own celebration, and that is great, but the town feels a little bit of a disconnect unless you have something like this."

Larry Cornelius knows the 1988 parade made him feel connected. Back then he bought three gallons of paint - one each of red, blue and yellow - and painted his early 1960s International Harvester truck to look like a Jayhawk.

He parked it on Massachusetts Street - where he owned Fun & Games store - to give him and his 72-year-old mother a good place to watch history.

Somehow his mother got then-head coach Larry Brown to sign a National Championship T-shirt. The newspaper report from that day tells that Brown signed shirts of people up and down the parade route as he traveled in a powder blue Corvette convertible.

Cornelius isn't sure how his mother scored the autograph, but he knows that it created a memory that lasted long past the day.

"That shirt was her pride and joy," Cornelius said. "When she went into a nursing home, she would always wear that shirt to watch the game."

Staff writer Jonathan Kealing contributed to this report.


spookymike42 9 years, 8 months ago

If I remember back in 1988, there were so many people that came to the parade that it stretched from 7th street to 19th street. I think the ending at south park is a little short. It was so crowded that I had to see it at Central Junior High School

N8iveSooner 9 years, 8 months ago

Finally, you got your parade! Should have it for the basketball & football teams......AND the 550 soldiers returning to Ft. Riley from Iraq today!!

bigjay 9 years, 8 months ago

Pretty funny, Agno! That was a great satire. Barack Chalk Jayhawk! (by the way, that's the original story, not a report of it)

Double 9 years, 8 months ago

I agree blindrabbit! The parade should have included both the football and basketball teams. I thought I remembered when the football team won the Orange Bowl that a parade was mentioned for later in the spring but nothing ever come of that. Figures!!!

Aileen Dingus 9 years, 8 months ago

Thanks for the reminder jaycat! I'll be doing that today.

RuralKsGirl 9 years, 8 months ago

Born and raised in Lawrence, the 1988 parade was a wonderful memory I'll never forget (the team won the championship on my 14th birthday) and now I'm thrilled for the opportunity to share the same experience with my own boys. We live about 3 hours from Lawrence, but you can bet your shiny shoes we'll be there to celebrate during the parade. ROCK CHALK JAYHAWK!!!Now to go send my "thank you"s to the powers that be....

Christine Pennewell Davis 9 years, 8 months ago

well I do not usually click on your links agno but that was interesting.

KansasPerson 9 years, 8 months ago

Hooray!!! We get a parade!!!!!!!!!!!I can't WAIT!!!!!!

Tamaralaug 9 years, 8 months ago

The feedback link listed above is not working as of now. Try this link instead.

simplykristib 9 years, 8 months ago

The 2008 Orange Bowl champs should be included as well. :)

jaycat 9 years, 8 months ago

Now all of you that called or sent emails need to respond back and give your thanks.Please visit and leave feedback (Select "General Athletic Department Feedback"), telling them you want a parade. D. SquierPresident & CEO , Chamber of Commercelsquier@lawrencechamber.comJames MarchionyAssistant Athletic Director for

phenommenom 9 years, 8 months ago

Ahhhh Yeah I LOVE me some Parade! I do hope the football team shows up too!

blindrabbit 9 years, 8 months ago

Don't want to dilute the tribute to the Basketball team. but it would be nice to include the Orange Bowl football winners in the parade as well. We attended the football recognition event in Allen for them last month, but that was not sufficient to their success in my mind.

BeeBee3 9 years, 8 months ago

FYI Squier is no longer the Chamber CEO. Send thanks to Beth Johnson- Vice Pres.

BeeBee3 9 years, 8 months ago

Haha- nice. Just like ESPN's April fool saying the last few minutes of Davidson had to be played again because of an uncertainty on a player being fouled out.

Piggles 9 years, 8 months ago

I remember the parade in 1988. It was supposed to be from 7th street to 11th. Then it went to 13th, then to 15th. by the time I got off work, it had grown to 17th and finally ended up going to 19th street. I took like 3 rolls of film. There were so many people it took a long time for it to come down Massachussetts as everybody who was a KU fan wanted to congratulate the team on their National Championship. I'm glad KU is having a parade to honor the 2007-2008 KU team. It is something that they will always remember and something they can tell their kids and grandkids. Thank you KU and Lawrence for letting us KU Fans honor and congratulate our players for a wonderful job they did in the tournament. All the news media was about North Carolina, UCLA and Memphis so it was kind of nice to kind of slip in there to the final game and just when everyone thought it all over and Memphis taking the title we found a way to believe and came back to tie the game and go into overtime and win it. ROCK CHALK JAYHAWKS GO BIG BLUE!!!!!!!

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