Every year, cities in the Los Angeles area use the Rose Parade as way to bring their community together and have fun designing and building a float that reflects their town. Awards are icing on the cake.
Some cities copy iconic buildings or landmarks, such as Beverly Hills’ “City of Dreams Come True” or Burbank’s “Centennial Celebration.” Sierra Madre recollected the Spanish and Mexican history of the San Gabriel Valley with “Sueños de California.” Some are fanciful, such as Downey’s “A Stroll Down Memory Lane” and Torrance’s “Afternoon Tea with Friends.” West Covina marked the anniversary of 9/11 with “Heroes in the Making.”
Some cities design and build their own floats. La Cañada Flintridge sets up a “float barn” under the 210 Freeway, and South Pasadena utilizes a local parking lot. Other “do-it-yourself” cities are Burbank, Downey and Sierra Madre. Other cities hire float building companies, but they give their input as to how they want their town represented and utilize volunteers from their communities.
This article focuses on city floats that have not been featured in previous articles, but are places to be “Building Dreams, Friendships and Memories,” the theme of the 2011 parade.
The photo gallery at the left presents the remaining 2011 city floats.
- Los Angeles celebrated “Cirque du Soliel Comes to Town” with its 113th Rose Parade entry. The tie-in was film industry, so central to the economy of Los Angeles, and the homage to film in Cirque do Soliel’s show IRIS. Landmarks such as the Kodak Theater, Grauman’s Chinese Theater, Universal Studios, and the Hollywood Walk of Fame are framed by giant rolls of film.
- Glendale focused on still photography with “Say Cheese” which featured a bride and groom atop a hunk of cheese being shot by a gigantic bellows camera. A paparazzo mouse and other memorable moments completed the picture.
- La Cañada Flintridge reminded do-it-yourselfers to “3-2-1 DIG;” that is, to call local utilities before attempting to dig up the yard. A trio of unmanned construction machines made a mess of a poor gopher’s home and cut through a pipe or two.
Video at left shows the La Cañada Flintridge float in the 2011 Rose Parade
- Alhambra saluted its sister city, Rizhao, China with “Building Friendships Across the Pacific,” a beautiful display of brightly colored lanterns above Rizhao and balloons over Alhambra. They met in the middle of the arch at a golden sun floating over the Pacific Ocean.
- South Pasadena presented an idyllic town with “Backyard Adventures.” A group of kids climbed a central tree and used cardboard boxes for forts as they played at pirates. Outriders in barrel boats drove along with the main float.
- Duarte/City of Hope recreated a gorgeous scene out of the nearby San Gabriel Mountains with “Dreams for the Community.” A statuesque buck watches as people hike, bike, fish, camp, and climb in the mountains. The City of Hope is a National Cancer Institute designated Comprehensive Cancer Center.
For links to the 2011 float articles and other float information, read Rose Parade floats 101: Photos, winners, articles for the 2011 parade
The theme of the 123rd Rose Parade and 98th Rose Bowl Game is “Just Imagine…” The events take place on Monday, Jan. 2, 2012 to avoid interfering with worship services on Sunday. The Tournament of Roses is a celebration that lasts several weeks in the fall and winter, with the high points being the Rose Parade and Rose Bowl Game. Keep following your Tournament of Roses Examiner for the latest news and for upcoming announcements.
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