Rose Parade 2018 equestrian lineup announced

The Ramona Pageant riders and dancers in the 2013 Tournament of Roses Parade. Photo c. 2013 Ramona Monteros

 

by Laura Berthold Monteros

Tournament of Roses President Lance Tibbett today announced the 20 equestrian groups that will grace the 129th Rose Parade on Jan. 1, 2018. The Rose Parade theme is “Making a Difference”; certainly horses make a difference in lives every day, from the Mini Therapy Horses that work with children and adults in crisis to United States Marine Corps horses who give hope to the prisoners who do the initial training.

Most of the units in the 2018 parade are old favorites, including the Long Beach Mounted Police, which sat out last year for the first time in decades. Law enforcement has a big presence this year, with four units, including one with bagpipes and drums. Notably missing is Medieval Times, who have frequently (not always) accompanied the Royal Court float. This writer feels a special affinity for the Ramona Pageant (see the cutline on the photo above), Broken Horn Riders (I have a boot jack that I bought at the Broken Horn Saddlery), Los Hermanos Bañuelos (fellow Altadenans), and of course, bagpipes.

Equestrians mount a variety of breeds and use distinctive tack and colorful costumes. Historic groups strive for accuracy. All units are invited to participate in Equestfest, which will takes place on Friday, Dec. 29, 2017, at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center. Details and ticket prices are at Sharp Seating Company.

Equestrians in the 2018 Rose Parade

  1. 1st Cavalry Division Horse Cavalry Detachment (Fort Hood, Texas)
  2. Broken Horn Ropers (Baldwin Park, Calif.)
  3. Budweiser Clydesdales (St. Louis, Mo.)
  4. California Highway Patrol Mounted Patrol Unit (Sacramento, Calif.)
  5. Long Beach Mounted Police (Long Beach, Calif.)
  6. Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Mounted Enforcement Detail (Los Angeles, Calif.)
  7. The Los Angeles Police Department Metropolitan Division Mounted Platoon, Honor Guard, Bagpipe & Drum Band (Los Angeles, Calif.)
  8. Los Hermanos Bañuelos Charro Team (Altadena, Calif.)
  9. Mane Attraction Equestrian Drill Team (Riverside, Calif.)
  10. Mini Therapy Horses (Calabasas, Calif.)
  11. The New Buffalo Soldiers (Shadow Hills, Calif.)
  12. The Norco Cowgirls & The Little Miss Norco Cowgirls Rodeo Drill Teams (Norco, Calif.)
  13. Ramona – California’s Official Outdoor Play (Hemet, Calif.)
  14. Scripps Miramar Ranch (San Diego, Calif.)
  15. So Cal Mini Horse Sanctuary, Inc. (Hemet, Calif.)
  16. Spirit of the West Riders (Leona Valley, Calif.)
  17. United States Marine Corps Mounted Color Guard (Barstow, Calif.)
  18. The Valley Center Vaqueros (Valley Center, Calif.)
  19. The Valley Hunt Club (Pasadena, Calif.)
  20. Wells Fargo Stagecoaches (Meeker, Okla.)

Even after 100 years, a Rose Queen is forever at Pasadena Museum of History

Pres. Brad Ratliff with the 99th Queen of the Tournament of Roses, Victoria “Tori” Cecilia Castellanos.

UPDATE: Pasadena Museum of History is pleased to extend the Blue Star Museums program offer of free admission to active duty personnel for the new exhibition Royals of Pasadena, which opened to the public Labor Day weekend. It is on view noon to 5 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays through Feb. 11, 2018.

 

by Laura Berthold Monteros

On Jan. 1, 2018, the 100th Rose Queen will ride a spectacular new float along Colorado Blvd. in the 129th Tournament of Roses Parade. In anticipation of this historic happening, Pasadena Museum of History is presenting an exhibit featuring crowns and gowns of past Rose Queens, including the one Margaret Huntley Main wore in the 1940 parade. Queen Margaret is the most senior living Rose Queen, the author of A Rose Queen Is Forever, and co-founder of the Queens Club with Sally Stanton Rubsamen.

“Royals of Pasadena,” runs from Sept. 2, 2017 through Feb. 11, 2018, so folks in town for the Tournament of Roses can plan a visit to PMH. In addition to stunning gowns by William Cahill and Tadashi Shoji, jewel-encrusted crowns of the past century are on loan from the signature sponsor Tournament of Roses. Photos and ephemera documenting this Pasadena tradition will be displayed, as well as daywear, accessories, and jewelry from the Court wardrobes, on loan from former members of the Royal Court. The exhibit will explore the traditions and history of the Royal Court, from the selection process to riding on a float in the Rose Parade.

A tidbit of history here: The upcoming parade will be the 129th, but the queen who will be chosen on Oct. 20 is only the 100th. Why is that? The answer is at the end of this article. Continue reading “Even after 100 years, a Rose Queen is forever at Pasadena Museum of History”

Wingtip to Wingtip, WASP fly with the best in the 2014 Rose Parade

WASP pilots Shirley Kruse, Jean McCreery and Barbara Simon. Copyright L.B. Monteros 2013

 

by Laura Berthold Monteros

NOTE: This is a reposting of an article that appeared on Examiner.com on Dec. 29, 2013. The last WASP to ride on the 2014 float “Our Eyes Are on the Stars” slipped the surly bonds of earth yesterday.

It was guys in planes who won the war, right?  The war, World War II.  The guys tested the aircraft and flew them from here to there.  Well, there were a few, but according to the National WASP World War II Museum, more than 50 percent of the ferrying of high-speed pursuit aircraft (now called fighters) between 1942 and 1944 was done by women.  These women were WASP.

Examiner interviewed three of these women today at Fiesta Parade Floats, where “Our Eyes Are On The Stars,” a float to honor the Women Airforce Service Pilots, is being built.  The service they performed was ferrying fighters across the country, flying tow target tests for shooting practice, and testing planes so that the men could fly them overseas.

We spoke with pilots Shirley Kruse, Jean McCreery and Barbara Simon who have come to Pasadena for the Rose Parade.  When the war ended, the WASP were dismissed without benefits, without even bus fare home.  “It was a wonderful time, I tell you,” Kruse said.  “We were so disappointed when we were deactivated.  They Continue reading “Wingtip to Wingtip, WASP fly with the best in the 2014 Rose Parade”

WASP float honoring female WWII pilots wins National Trophy in 2014 Rose Parade

“Our Eyes Are on the Stars” was built by Fiesta Parade Floats for the 2014 parade to commemorate WASP service in WWII. It won the National Trophy. Eight WASP and 14 Air Force pilots accompanied the float.
“Our Eyes Are on the Stars” was built by Fiesta Parade Floats for the 2014 parade to commemorate WASP service in WWII. It won the National Trophy. Eight WASP and 14 Air Force pilots accompanied the float.

by Laura Berthold Monteros

NOTE: This is a reposting of an article that appeared on Examiner.com on Jan. 9, 2014. It is being reposted in honor of the women who rode the float, all of whom have now taken their final flights.

When the Wingtip to Wingtip float passed the stands, Rose Parade viewers spontaneously stood to honor the women who undergirded the Allied air supremacy in World War II.  “Our Eyes Are on the Stars” was built by Fiesta Parade Floats for the 2014 parade to commemorate the WASP (Women Airforce Service Pilots) units that were disbanded 70 years ago.  It won the National Trophy for Best Depiction of Life in the USA, Past, Present or Future.

Out of several thousand applicants, 1,102 were chosen to fly military aircraft all over the United States.  They ferried planes from builder to base, tested aircraft for the boys to fly in battle, and flew tow targets to train gunners.  The WASP flew 77 different types of American military planes, including AT-6, P-52 and B-29, more than 60 million miles. Thirty-eight gave their lives.

We were fortunate to interview three former WASP Continue reading “WASP float honoring female WWII pilots wins National Trophy in 2014 Rose Parade”

Honor a loved one with a memorial rose on a Rose Parade float

by Laura Berthold Monteros

Donate LifeRoses seem appropriate for any occasion, and never more so than in the Tournament of Roses Parade. Some float sponsors offer people an opportunity to remember a loved one by purchasing a memorial rose that is placed on their float. With the theme of the 2018 Rose Parade being “Making a Difference,” what better way to remember someone who made a difference in the lives they touched!

Each rose has a tag for the name of the honoree and a short dedication. Donate Life and Odd Fellows and Rebekahs are featured in this article, but as others come up, we will add them.

“The Gift of TimOdd Fellowse,” designed and built by Paradiso Parade Floats, is Donate Life’s entry. The float honors both organ donors and recipients. Roses can be dedicated to donors, families, recipients, and those waiting for transplants by using the online form until Dec. 20. Current donations are listed here. This will be the organization’s 15th year in the Rose Parade.

Odd Fellows and Rebekahs have sponsored floats for 66 years. The 2018 entry, “Sacrifice to Serve,” honors recipients of the Purple Heart and will feature riders who have received the medal. Prospective riders can download the 2018 Rider Application before Aug. 3. The 2018 Memorial Garden order form is not yet posted, but will be on the rose float site soon.

104th Rose Bowl Game tickets go on sale Sept. 1

by Laura Berthold MonterosFootball

It’s not easy to get tickets to the Granddaddy of Them All—most are set aside for the rival teams and dignitaries—but there are some available to the general public. Seats to the 104th Rose Bowl Game go on sale on Friday, Sept 1 at 9 a.m. PT online or by calling Ticketmaster at 1-800-653-8000. A maximum of four tickets per person will be available during the Rose Bowl Game ticket pre-sale. Individual ticket prices start at $185 plus Ticketmaster handling fees.

The 2018 game on Jan. 1 hosts a College Football Playoff Semifinal, featuring two of the top-four teams in the country. The four teams that will play in the College Football Playoff Semifinal will be announced on Sunday, Dec. 3 via a national broadcast on ESPN. The Rose Bowl Game will host either the semifinal between the No. 1 and No. 4 teams in the nation or the No. 2 and No. 3 teams.

In addition to the Ticketmaster pre-sale, fans can also purchase official Rose Bowl Game travel and VIP Ticket and Hospitality Packages online through PrimeSport. For more information about the 2018 College Football Playoff at the Rose Bowl Game presented by Northwestern Mutual visit www.tournamentofroses.com.

Rose Parade Royal Court applications are open for the 100th Rose Queen

by Laura Berthold Monteros

There’s a special honor in store for the young woman who will be chosen as the Rose Queen for the 129th Rose Parade. She will be the 100th woman to grace the Queen’s float as it glides along Colorado Blvd. in Pasadena. She will be joined by six Princesses who share in experience of representing the Tournament of Roses and the City of Pasadena on Jan. 1, 2018 and throughout the year. Applications are now available on the Royal Court webpage.

2017 Rose Parade Royal Court: Clockwise from Queen Victoria Castellanos, Princesses Autumn Lundy, Audrey Cameron, Emi Powers, Shannon Larsuel, Natalie Petrosian, Maya Kawaguchi Khan
2017 Rose Parade Royal Court: Clockwise from Queen Victoria, Princesses Autumn, Audrey, Emi, Shannon, Natalie, Maya.

The first round of tryouts is held over two days, Saturday, Sept. 9 from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., and Monday, Sept. 11 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.at Tournament House, 391 S. Orange Grove Blvd., Pasadena. Schools are assigned specific time slots, but if an applicant cannot be there at that time, she can come during any of the tryout hours. In the first round, each applicant has 15 seconds in front of the Queen & Court Committee to state her badge number and why she wants to be on the Royal Court. The 11-member selection committee will not ask any questions nor ask the applicant to begin speaking.

Advice from previous Court members is to be confident, be genuine, and be yourself. The Tournament suggests wearing something that feels comfortable, reflects the girl’s personality, and will make a good first impression. This column has noticed that almost all the girls wear dresses, and many wear the same dress for the entire round of interviews. Participants are selected based upon a combination of qualities, including public speaking ability, poise, academic achievement, and community and school involvement.

To participate, an applicant must

  • Be an unmarried, female resident of the  Pasadena Area Community College District and able to provide verification of residence;
  • Be a senior in high school or enrolled as a full-time student (minimum 12 units) in any accredited school or college in the Pasadena Area Community College District (a list is on the webpage);
  • Possess at least a 2.0 (C) non-weighted grade point average in both the current and previous years’ course work and able to provide verification of same;
  • Be at least 17 years of age by Dec. 31, 2017, and not more than 21 years of age before Jan. 5, 2018, with no children;
  • Register and complete the official Royal Court online application;
  • Be available to participate in all scheduled interview sessions.
Queen & Court judges at the first round of Royal Court tryouts in 2016
Queen & Court judges at the first round of Royal Court tryouts in 2016

At the tryouts, former Royal Court members brief applicants on what to expect and are available to answer questions. Tours of the historic Wrigley Mansion are offered and all the applicants are gifted with a rose, photo, official Rose Parade poster, and a ticket for two to the Royal Ball, a semi-formal dance hosted by the Tournament of Roses at the Pasadena Convention Center on Sept. 22.

The court will serve from October, 2017 to October, 2018, but most of the activity happens from mid-October to the first week in January, with around 100 appearances during that time. For all the many hours they serve, the young women on the Royal Court receive both tangible and intangible benefits. They serve in a world-renowned volunteer community, develop public speaking and etiquette skills, and make lifelong friendships, as well as receive a small educational scholarship, full wardrobe for appearances, professional hairstyling, make-up application and instruction, and 50-yard-line seats at the 104th Rose Bowl Game.

The Royal Court is chosen from a field of around 900 applicants. Approximately 250 participants will be invited back for a second round of interviews; from that group, about 75 young women will be asked to participate in the third round of interviews. On Sept. 27, approximately 25 to 35 candidates will be announced as finalists. The seven-member Royal Court will be announced on Oct. 2 at Tournament House. The announcement and coronation of the Rose Queen is scheduled for the evening of Oct. 18.

Helpful links:

Online application

Brochure (pdf)

 

Happy 5th Anniversary, Curiosity! ‘We changed the world, everybody!’

Live from the Pasadena Convention Center, August 5, 2012: Members of the Mars Science Laboratory team at the Jet Propulsion Lab with Curiosity’s first two photos

 

by Laura Berthold Monteros

This article first appeared in Altadenablog five years ago, on the day of the Mars Science Laboratory landing.

Seven minutes of terror: seven minutes between the time the Mars Science Lab capsule entered the Mars atmosphere and the MSL team at JPL learned whether the rover Curiosity had safely landed.

Fourteen minutes of jubilation: 14 minutes of nonstop cheering in the Pasadena Convention Center, as the Planetfest crowd heard the news that Curiosity had set all six wheels on the surface of the Red Planet at 10:31 p.m. PDT on Monday.  Punctuated by photos flashing onto the screens and urged on by Bill Nye and Bruce Betts of The Planetary Society, 2,000 people in the ballroom and another 1,000 at the Pasadena Civic Center chanted “JPL! JPL!”

 

Watch the video live from Planetfest

 

The folks at JPL, that real-life sci-fi community nestled at the top of the Arroyo Seco, had done it again, and we were there to catch it live.  Well, not quite live, since the signal took 14 minutes to get to earth, but live for us, and as exciting as all get out.  Scientists and engineers embraced each other, folks at the Convention Center high-fived strangers, and the orbiter Odyssey outdid itself by relaying not the “maybe one” photo that was promised, but four splendid, spectacular shots.

Preparing for news of the descent, the excited Nye, CEO of The Planetary Society said, “My friends, this is Continue reading “Happy 5th Anniversary, Curiosity! ‘We changed the world, everybody!’”