Villanova Parade: How and where to watch the NCAA champions

Villanova players and coach Jay Wright celebrate after winning the Wildcats’ third NCAA men’s basketball championship in school history. Villanova beat Michigan, 79-62, in the title game in San Antonio.

>> READ MORE: Live updates from the parade

The Villanova Wildcats are bringing Philadelphia its second victory parade in two months, thanks to their sweeping win over the University of Michigan in the NCAA championship game on Monday. The street-side celebrations commence at 11 a.m. Thursday, so make plans to call out of work now.

The parade steps off  from 20th and Market Streets and heads east, ending with a rally at Dilworth Park. Villanova has canceled classes Thursday so students can take part, and as many as 60,000 people are expected to attend.

Take note, the expected crowd is far smaller than the 700,000 at the Eagles Super Bowl parade, so getting to and from, as well as navigating around, the parade should be easier.

Ready to show your support? Here’s what you need to know:

Parade route

Stake out a spot anywhere along Market Street from 20th to City Hall for optimal viewing. At approximately 11:45 a.m., there will be a rally with the team in Dilworth Park that is expected to wrap up around 12:30 p.m.

Getting to the parade

As with any large public event in Center City, the ideal mode of transportation is your own two feet. However, if you’re not within walking or biking distance, there are plenty of public transportation options.  The SEPTA Broad Street Line runs right to City Hall, but be advised: The stairs and elevators leading to the Dilworth Park exit will be closed beginning at 9 a.m., and will reopen as conditions allow. So take an alternative stairway, and then walk to the west end of City Hall.

All of SEPTA’s subway-surface trolley lines, except for Line 15,  stop at 19th and Market, near the start of the parade. For those heading into the city via train, Amtrak’s 30th Street Station connects with the trolley line. Alternatively, the walking distance from 30th Street Station to  20th and Market is one-half-mile,  about a 10-minute stroll.

For those leaving from the Villanova Station via SEPTA’s Paoli-Thorndale Line, be sure to bring cash. The ticket office will be open from 5:45 to 11:45 a.m., but you can skip the lines and buy a ticket on the train if you have cash in hand. The line goes to Suburban Station, a block from 17th and Market Streets.

Parking and driving restrictions

Road closures will begin at 9:30 a.m., and will remain in effect as late as 3 p.m., depending on location.  Note: more roads may be added.

Road and lane closures

Closed from 9:30 a.m. to noon:

  • 2000 to 2900 blocks of Market Street

Closed from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.:

  • 600 to 1900 blocks of Market Street
  • 16th through 20th Streets from JFK Boulevard to Chestnut Street

Closed from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.:

  • 1500 block of Market Street
  • 15th Street from Race Street to Chestnut
  • South Penn Square from 15th Street to Broad Street

Parking options near the parade route will be limited. The following streets will have restricted parking from 6 a.m. until 4 p.m.

Temporary no-parking zones:

  • 1400 block of JFK (south side)
  • 1500 through 1700 blocks of JFK (both sides)
  • 1500 to 2900 blocks of Market (both sides)
  • 15th from Chestnut to Arch (both sides)
  • South Penn Square from 15th to Broad (south side)

Vehicles parked in those areas during the restricted period will be moved.

Weather and what to wear

Despite a somewhat rainy and drab start to the week, Thursday’s forecast is looking bright. The temperature at 11 a.m. is expected to hover around 45 degrees and will remain in the 40s throughout the day. Though full sun is predicted, don’t forget to take a jacket. A steady 15 m.p.h.  wind will make it feel like 38 degrees. You can leave the hand-warmers at home, but be sure to grab a pair of sunglasses on your way out the door.

Camera icon JESSICA GRIFFIN / Staff Photographer
The last Villanova parade was on April 8, 2016, after the team’s 77-74 win over North Carolina to clinch the NCAA championship title.

What to take and what not to take

As mentioned above, take your shades, and perhaps a bottle of water. Now’s also the time to pull out any spirited signs or other fan gear.

Photography is allowed, but leave your drone at home. The city has designated the parade area a “No Drone Zone.”

Backpacks and bags are permitted but must not be left unattended.

After party

The celebration is sure to continue at bars throughout the area. Call ahead to check for specials.

Or head straight to Citizens Bank Park and get the tailgating started for the Phillies’ home opener. The game  against the Miami Marlins starts at 3 p.m.

TV streams

Can’t make it to the parade? Here’s where to watch it live on TV/online.

  • NBC10 will broadcast it on NBC10 and stream it on the NBC10 mobile app and NBC10.com.
  • CBS3 will broadcast it on on CBS3 and stream it on  CBSPhilly.com and the CBSPhilly Facebook page
  • 6abc, the official television station of the parade, will also broadcast it