When Vienna Little League held its opening-day ceremony on April 16 for the first time since 2019 (the pandemic canceling the past two), there was something new included during this year’s event.
There was a parade of multiple teams of different age groups onto Nance Field, where the festivities were held. In past years, there was no parade at the ceremony. Players and teams just gathered in the outfield grass on Nance, with no real organization to their masses.
This year’s parade of players added to the length to the Vienna ceremony by about 20 minutes.
Local Little Leagues in Arlington, Great Falls and McLean have included a parade of teams in some form during their opening-day ceremonies for many years. Vienna Little League also has now joined the masses in that fun-parade regard.
Arlington’s parade from one field to another has dozens of teams participating. It takes a while for all to gather in the outfield of one of the Barcroft Park diamonds.
Most other local leagues also have some type of parade in their ceremonies. The McLean Little League parade starts at McLean High School, then teams walk about a mile down Westmoreland Street to the league’s three-field complex.
Parades allow so many players to take part in something significant, as a way of jump starting excitement and motivation for the season.
A downside to such parades is they are definitely time consuming, adding as much as 30 to 45 minutes to ceremonies. Also, parades too often include way too many adults, who walk along with the players and teams. Sometimes in the McLean Little League parade, it appears there are more adults walking down the street than players.
Maybe have a limit of just two adults per team. Otherwise, Little League parades are good things.