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Atlanta Celebrates Olympic Victory With Ticker Tape Parade

September 24, 1990 GMT

ATLANTA (AP) _ Olympic fever was rampant in the Georgia capital today as Atlanta staged its first ticker tape parade to celebrate its designation as host of the 1996 Summer Games.

Thousands of spectators lined the parade route, pelting Mayor Maynard Jackson and other dignitaries with confetti and streamers as they rode by.

″I’m the guy who’s got to clean this stuff up,″ Jackson laughed as he and his wife, Valerie, tried to brush the paper from their hair.

Glo Ruiz of suburban Kennesaw brought her two children downtown 2 1/2 hours early to get a front-row seat for the noon parade.

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″I’m originally from Texas, where we know what parades are all about. This is my first parade in Atlanta, and I’m sure its going to be just as good,″ she said.

″It’s the biggest thing I’ve ever seen in Atlanta,″ said 63-year-old Leonard Johnson Sr., a lifelong resident.

Police estimated that 50,000 people had gathered for the parade by 11:30 a.m. Atlanta schools excused children from class to see it, with parental approval.

Organizers used trucks to pass out 34 tons of confetti to the waiting crowd, and 100 miles of ticker tape was thrown from buildings along the route.

Other dignitaries riding in the parade included Gov. Joe Frank Harris, Sen. Sam Nunn and 85-year-old Fred Alderman, Georgia’s oldest Olympian.