Big changes for the Rose Parade equestrian lineup in 2020

Spirit of the West Riders, copyright 2019 by L.B. Monteros

by Laura Berthold Monteros

It’s refreshing to see equestrian groups that have not participated in the Rose Parade before, but the 2020 Tournament of Roses Parade does it in spades. Of the 17 units participating, eight are new this year, at least since 2012, when The Rose Examiner began keeping lists. The 131st Rose Parade, “The Power of Hope,” takes place on Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2020.

The must-haves are back—Valley Hunt Club, founders of the Rose Parade, and the United States Marine Corps Mounted Color Guard. Old favorites, such as the Budweiser Clydesdales, Spirit of the West Riders, Los Hermanos Bañuelos, and Scripps Miramar Ranch, are back. Losses include Norco Cowgirls, Wells Fargo Stagecoaches, and New Buffalo Soldiers. We’ll see if we can get the story on that one.

For old-time locals such as myself, the Knott’s Berry Farm entry should be delightful. It was started by the Walter and Cordelia Knott 100 years ago to keep people occupied while they waited for a seat at Cordelia’s chicken dinner restaurant in Buena Park. The Knotts were the first commercial growers of the hybrid boysenberry, and the influence of that early effort is seen all over the park. The park grew from burro and stagecoach rides and a nostalgic “ghost town” to a full-on amusement park after Disneyland opened in nearby Anaheim.

The groups are invited to participate in Equestfest presented by Wells Fargo on Dec. 29, 2019 at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center. During Equestfest, groups perform trick riding, drills, dancing and roping skills, and attendees can walk through the stables and speak with the riders. Tickets are available through Sharp Seating. Detailed descriptions of each equestrian unit are at 2020 Equestrian participants.

2020 Rose Parade equestrian participants

New entries are marked by an asterisk*

  • 1st Cavalry Division Horse Cavalry Detachment (Fort Hood, Texas)
  • Arabian Horse Association (Sierra Madre, Calif.)*
  • Blue Shadows Mounted Drill Team (Castaic, Calif.)
  • Budweiser Clydesdales (St. Louis, Mo.)
  • Buffalo Soldiers Mounted Cavalry Unit (BSMCU) (Mojave, Calif.)*
  • Express Clydesdales (Yukon, Okla.)*
  • Horsewomen of Temecula Wine Country (Temecula, Calif.)*
  • Knott’s Berry Farm (Buena Park, Calif.)*
  • Los Hermanos Bañuelos (Altadena, Calif.)
  • Mid America Cowgirls Rodeo Drill Team (New Buffalo, Mich.)*
  • Mini Therapy Horses (Calabasas, Calif.)
  • Painted Ladies Rodeo Performers (Roseville, Calif.)*
  • Rural Media Group (Gretna, Neb.)*
  • Scripps Miramar Ranch (San Diego, Calif.)
  • Spirit of the West Riders (Leona Valley, Calif.)
  • USMC Mounted Color Guard (Barstow, Calif.)
  • The Valley Hunt Club (Pasadena, Calif.)

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