METAIRIE, La. (WVUE) - The Little League World Series champions took to the streets of Jefferson Parish Saturday for a Carnival-style parade to celebrate their hard-earned victory.
While seeing floats rolling down Bonnabel Boulevard is an odd sight in August, it was certainly a worthy way for the River Ridge team to take their victory lap.
Frank Andrade is the proud father of William Andrade, who pitched in the championship game against Hawaii.
“It’s unbelievable, just the accomplishments that they made,” Andrade said. “I don’t think they’re realized what they’ve done, but definitely, as time goes on, hopefully they realize the significance of what they did.”
And while he may not quite understand the weight of their success, Andrade’s son is most certainly aware of the community’s reaction.
“It’s crazy,” William Andrade said. “Everything. Everyone supporting us. It’s awesome.”
For his dad, the experience was a roller coaster.
“Just going through the game and not knowing how Will was going to perform, and I was just really nervous for him. But he’s just one of a kind, he was able to go out there in front of 20,000 people and throw strikes like the coach asked him to," Frank Andrade said.
Also being celebrated was the girls’ Southwest Regional Softball Team -- the runners up in their Little League World Series.
But many of the kids on both teams who have been playing this game their entire lives, they say it wasn’t the World Series that made them nervous. That, they said, was business as usual. It was their homecoming, being the center of attention in Jefferson Parish, that jolted their nerves, if even just a little bit.
Scott Frazier, the team’s manager, said making sure the kids are comfortable with their surroundings is crucial to their success and well-being
“Our job’s as important as anything. To keep them grounded and even keeled, and just relaxed. That’s probably some of the most important things we can do as coaches for the kids,” Frazier said.
And just like when the Saints brought home the Lombardi Trophy, those in Louisiana have another team to celebrate and they’re doing in in the best way they know how.
“They get to see the support that was back home for these guys. So yeah, that’s awesome,” Frazier said.
That support, Frank Andrade said, cannot be overlooked.
“The support that the area has given them, I mean the boys have so many obligations, and just the outpouring of support, everyone’s just so happy for them," he said.
Both teams have also been invited to ride in another, bigger parade. On Friday, the Krewe of Bacchus invited them to ride on their own custom float in their massive, highly anticipated parade next February.