St. Louis has seen its share of parades but none the likes of the Blues parade scheduled for noon downtown on Saturday.
For parents of young children, the historic event raises the question of whether to schlep a baby and all the accouterments to cheer for the hometown hockey heroes.
Here are some factors to consider when making that decision:
A newborn's immune system is still developing six to eight weeks after birth, so many doctors advise avoiding large crowds during this time.
Dr. Donna Eckhart, medical director of Mercy Children's Hospital emergency room, said one primary concern is exposure to infections.
"The very youngest of the young do not yet have strong immune systems," she said. "If they get a fever, the primary doctor would probably want to see that baby or even send them to the emergency department."
Even slightly older babies are at some risk, she added.
Most children are fully vaccinated by age two (until they need boosters). This doesn't mean all two-year-olds are ready to hit the parade route.
Consider your child's temperament: What is his or her comfort level and experience with large, unpredictable crowds?
Can your child be easily corralled? Or is he or she a runner, liable to get loose and lost in a crowd?
Is your child easily overwhelmed or sensitive to sensory overload?
Is your child prone to anxiety? Hundreds of thousands of people moving en masse can trigger meltdowns, even in older children.
The current weather forecast predicts rain on Saturday. Will your child be comfortable standing around or waiting in stroller for hours, while possibly getting wet?
Some children can't tolerate a drop of water on them, while others revel in the rain.
There may be hundreds of thousands of people who show up for the parade, and a significant percentage will have consumed some amount of alcoholic beverages. There's no controlling the behavior of drunken, rowdy people around you, so think about how your child would fare if you're stuck next to a group that is less kid-friendly than you might prefer.
Some children need to stick to a predictable routine in order be happy. Others can go with the flow and skip their normal nap times. It's also important to consider what your family has planned for the rest of the day after the parade.
If you've already bought KidzBop concert tickets for later that evening or there's a birthday party or family special occasion later the same day, it might be expecting too much for a young child to handle multiple big events.
Eckardt said general fatigue could become an issue for babies and parents during an event like the parade.
There's also the basic logistical concerns: No one can predict how long traffic might take getting to and from the parade. Plan for longer than expected delays.
How long can your child go between potty breaks? What's the back-up plan for accidents that might happen? Are you planning to navigate a stroller amid the crowd? How far are you willing to carry a child (or children) if they poop out?
A stroller may help prevent little ones from getting crushed underfoot, but it may also be hard to maneuver in tightly congested areas.
It's important to consider hydration, snacks and sunscreen (even on overcast days).
Many fans feel this is a once in a lifetime event they want to experience with their children. Some may enjoy the chaos and excitement of the parade downtown, while others will have a much better time watching it on television.