After Eagles' Super Bowl celebrations, clean up turns to parade prep

Large flower pots lay on their sides along N. Broad St outside the Pennsylvania Convention Center after a night of celebration in the city after the Philadelphia Eagles defeated the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LII.

As crews cleaned up from the rowdy overnight Super Bowl celebrations in Center City, commuters made their way to work on Monday bearing a mix of sleep deprivation and pure shock.

At the Snyder Avenue Broad Street line station, Albert Solimeo waited quietly for a train — until he spotted neighbor Joseph Forte on the platform. Their high-five’s echoed through the otherwise subdued station.

“It was tit for tat all night long,” said Forte, 46. “They were just going back and forth. And we did it man, usually, you know, Philadelphia, we do it so big and then we blow it in the end. We didn’t blow it this time.”

Both men have lived in South Philadelphia their whole lives. Both said they never expected to experience a night like Sunday.

“Speechless. Speechless,” 53-year-old Solimeo said over, and over, and over. “I have nothing to say. If you would have told me it would’ve went down that way there’s no way I would have believed you.”

Three arrests were made during the night’s celebrations, according to the Mayor’s Office.

In Center City, city crews made quick progress cleaning up Monday morning, sweeping sidewalks and streets littered with beer cans, busted-open cigars and other debris. By noon, that job was mostly complete, and workers had moved onto setting up porta potties in preparation for Thursday’s victory parade, scheduled to start at 11 a.m. at Broad Street and Pattison Avenue.

Downed street lights caused some traffic problems at several major intersections, including Market and Juniper Streets. Workers from the Streets Department began replacing the first of six toppled lights there at about 10 a.m. The work was expected to be finished later Monday.

Another four lights were tipped at 17th and Chestnut Streets. Those were expected to be replaced by Monday evening or Tuesday morning. A police officer was at the busy intersection directing traffic in the early morning but not later in the day. The intersection filled with vehicles, but most were stopping and yielding to pedestrians.

Several windows were smashed at the Market Street Macy’s, and workers there shoveled the shards of glass into buckets Monday morning. An awning at the nearby Ritz Carlton collapsed Sunday night under the weight of fans who had crawled on top.

At a gas station at Broad and Catharine streets that was looted during the celebrations, a sign on the locked door said simply: CLOSED. Candy bars and trash were littered on the sidewalk.

About 7 a.m., clearly tired commuters walked through the underground walkways of Suburban Station, some wearing Eagles green.

Girl Scouts Madison Long and Paige Clipsham, both 12 and of  Morgantown, Berks County, waved green and white pom-poms, trying to rally those passing to a nearby table filled with cookies for sale.

For today, the girls have renamed Thin Mints “Eagles Green.”

Long’s mother, Shannon Long, said they drove in from Morgantown, arriving about 5:30 am. They set up their table and display of boxes about 6 a.m., but only sold about seven boxes in the first hour. They plan to sell until noon.

Business is “slow, but we’re optimistic that everybody needs celebratory cookies,” Shannon Long said.

Sales were better at Modell’s near Walnut and 16th Streets, which opened at 5 a.m. three hours early. Stacks of Super Bowl championship shirts in every size were piled high on folding tables, boxes of extras jammed beneath.

Alanna Lacina, the manager, got in to open the store at 3 a.m.

“Last night we had a great night of sales, lines going to the back of the store,” she said. “Everyone’s really excited.”

Anna Cattie and her daughter Isabella, 16, of Quakertown capped their weekend stay in Center City by buying $180 in Eagles gear.

“It’s amazing. I’ve never seen them win a Super Bowl, but I’ve seen them lose a lot,” said the mother, 47, who watched the game at the hotel where they stayed with a group that included her husband and son.

“This year the team was such a family themselves, and so gracious,” she added. “Everything Nick Foles said was gracious. It makes you so proud of the Eagles.”

On Tuesday, city officials are expected to release more details on the long-awaited victory parade.

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