Photos: The American West on horseback in the 2018 Rose Parade

2018 Tournament of Roses Parade: Ramona – California’s Official Outdoor Play. “The Ramona Pageant” is the longest-running outdoor play in the United States. It’s based on Helen Hunt Jackson’s novel, which was written to call attention to the treatment of Native Americans.

By Laura Berthold Monteros

The horse was integral to the American West, whether by the Spanish colonists, the indigenous people of the plains, or in the expansion of the United States. Equestrian units in the 129th Tournament of Roses Parade on Jan. 1, 2018, reflected this history with authentic garb and tack. The gallery below has photos of the historical equestrian groups that rode along Colorado Blvd. Also be sure to take a look at “Healing, helping, and glamour in 2018 Rose Parade equestrian units.” Marine Corps photos are here and Los Angeles Police Department are here.

Equestrian units pictured in the gallery

  • 1st Cavalry Division Horse Cavalry Detachment (Fort Hood, Texas)
  • Wells Fargo Stagecoaches (San Francisco, Calif.)
  • Los Hermanos Bañuelos Charro Team (Altadena, Calif.)
  • Ramona – California’s Official Outdoor Play (Hemet, Calif.)
  • The Valley Hunt Club (Pasadena, Calif.)
  • Budweiser Clydesdales (St. Louis, Mo.)
  • Spirit of the West Riders (Leona Valley, Calif.)
  • The New Buffalo Soldiers (Shadow Hills, Calif.)

 

Photos: Healing, helping, and glamour in 2018 Rose Parade equestrian units

2018 Tournament of Roses Parade: So Cal Mini Horse Sanctuary, Inc. (Hemet, Calif.)

By Laura Berthold Monteros

Riders decked out in glitzy costumes on horses with silver-studded tack are a standing order in the Tournament of Roses Parade. The 129th Rose Parade, held on Jan. 1, 2018, added therapy horses and law enforcement units in uniform to the mix. The gallery below has photos of khaki-and-olive drab mounted officers, angelic miniature horses, and shiny rhinestone cowboys and cowgirls. For authenic costuming, check out “The American West on horseback in the 2018 Rose Parade.” Marine Corps photos are here and Los Angeles Police Department are here.

Equestrian units pictured in the gallery

  • So Cal Mini Horse Sanctuary, Inc. (Hemet, Calif.)
  • Mini Therapy Horses (Calabasas, Calif.)
  • The Norco Cowgirls & The Little Miss Norco Cowgirls Rodeo Drill Teams (Norco, Calif.)
  • Scripps Miramar Ranch (San Diego, Calif.)
  • Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Mounted Enforcement Detail (Los Angeles, Calif.)
  • Mane Attraction Equestrian Drill Team (Riverside, Calif.)
  • California Highway Patrol Mounted Patrol Unit (Sacramento, Calif.)
  • Broken Horn Ropers (Baldwin Park, Calif.)
  • The Valley Center Vaqueros (Valley Center, Calif.)

 

Photos of Royal Court hopefuls at the tryouts for 2019

The signature setpiece for the 2019 Rose Parade, with Lela adding some sparkle. The piece was designed by Katie Lipp, graphic designer for the Tournament, and built by float and scenic design company AES. Lipp was a princess on the 2014 Royal Court.

by Laura Berthold Monteros

For many Pasadena area girls, it’s a rite of passage. For some, it’s a time to do something special with their friends. For others, they hope to make a statement. For all, the process is the same: Fill out an application, come to Tournament House on what is usually one of the hottest Saturdays of the year (or Monday for make-ups), get a number, sit for orientation by members of the outgoing Royal Court, and walk the gantlet of Queen & Court Committee judges. For 15 seconds, each girl has the opportunity to say why she would like to be on the Tournament of Roses Royal Court, and perhaps even becom the Rose Queen.

There is a small reward at the end. Docents lead group tours of Tournament House (the former Wrigley Mansion) throughout the day, and each girl gets a poster, a photo with a red long-stemmed rose, and two tickets to the Royal Ball a week or so later. And a few get to talk to The Rose Examiner! We talked to five young ladies and one gentleman at the tryouts on Sept. 8, and as usual, it was very interesting. They all attend high schools in Pasadena.

 

Lela is a senior at John Muir High School. Her ambition is to raise her GPA from 4.0 to 4.5, and be the valedictorian for her class. She is a member of the National Honor Society (NHS), vice president of the ASB, and treasurer of the BSU. She runs track and plays volleyball, but we talked about her service as a Student Ambassador for the Tournament.

“It’s pretty fun,” Lela said. She commented that it was “surprising” to learn  how nice and outgoing the people at the Tournament are. “They like to make jokes,” she added. She said that white suiters are sweet and are not as intimidating as one might think. (The term “white suiter” refers to members of the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Association, because they wear white suits to events.) it feels like “a warm and welcoming environment,” she said.

She said the process was “less nerve-wracking than I envisioned.” She would like to inspire black and brown girls to try out for the Royal Court, and “not to shy away from open doors.”

 

Jocelyn, who attends Marshal Fundamental School, told The Rose Examiner that she was nervous, because she hadn’t dressed the way most of the other girls had, but “I’m glad I did it, because it was a pretty good experience.” She would tell people who might be unsure about trying out, “It’s not as scary as  you think.” All the girls and the staff were fun, she said.

For her statement to the judges, Jocelyn told us she said “The reason I’m here is because I’ve never seen another girl like me on the court.” (We didn’t get a photo, but we can vouch that Jocelyn has the demeanor and poise to be a princess.) She affirmed, “I think it would be cool for other girls like me to see themselves in a respected institution.”

Jocelyn is a member of NHS and has served in the cabinet at Marshall since her sophomore year. She’s on the tennis team and GSA, and takes “lots of AP classes.”

 

Back at “The Melody of Life” setpiece, we found a group of three. Sylvie and Richard attend Blair High School, and Haley attends Maranatha. Richard participated in the tryouts to get tickets to the ball—and yes, even though boys are not chosen for the Royal Court, they do get the same perks as the girls who try out. Still, he enjoyed the process and said it was “good practice for the future” to have to craft a quick statement. He plays flute in the jazz band and is vice president of the ASB.

Asked why she tried out, Sylvie said, “The tickets don’t hurt!” She said she agrees that it’s good practice. Being on the court would be a good opportunity to inspire people, especially children.

“I know the queen and court do a lot of outreach,” she said. I want to be a princess, she said, but for the community service, not the title. Sylvie plays clarinet in the jazz band, is on the tennis team, and serves the site counsel representative for the ASB.

Haley told us her family has watched the Rose Parade for 50 years, so “I’ve seen it every year of my life.” She looks up to the court and has seen the impact the Royal Courts have had on the community. “They do a lot of good things for Pasadena,” she said. Haley is on the volleyball team at Maranatha.

 

Gabriela attends John Marshall Fundamental School, and is a real Rose Parade aficionado. She has lived her entire life in Pasadena, and watches the parade with her dad every year. She has worked on floats, and has come to the parade for the past three years.

Being on the court would be “a good opportunity to meet new people,” Gabriels said, and “a great experience as well.” She added that it’s also a tradition at her school for girls to try out. She is in the Puente program and just joined Unidos, a club that focuses on community service.

 

Keep following The Rose Examiner and subscribe in the box at the left, to find out who will serve on the Royal Court for the 130th Tournament of Roses Parade!

 

Marching band photos from the 2018 Rose Parade: Across the United States

Westlake High School Marching Thunder, Saratoga Springs, Utah

by Laura Berthold Monteros

Marching units that are invited to the Tournament of Roses Parade are among the highest quality in the United States. Their musicality and marching precision must meet rigorous standards. A high school band cannot march in the parade more often than once every four years, so almost all the students are new—and excited—when they walk along Colorado Blvd.

This photo gallery includes marching entries in the 129th Rose Parade from east of the Rockies.

  • Londonderry High School The Marching Lancer Band and Color Guard, Londonderry, N.H.
  • University of Massachusetts Minuteman Marching Band, Amherst, Mass.
  • Louisburg High School Marching Wildcat Band, Louisburg, Kan.
  • Albertville High School “Aggie” Band, Albertville, Ala.
  • Ronald Reagan High School Marching Band, San Antonio, Texas
  • Westlake High School Marching Thunder, Saratoga Springs, Utah
  • Pennsbury High School “Long Orange Line” Marching Band, Fairless Hills, Pa.
  • Lindbergh “Spirit of St. Louis” Marching Band, St. Louis, Mo.

For other articles on marching bands, as well as floats and equestrians, check out the 2018 Rose Parade page.

 

 

 

Marching band photos from the 2018 Rose Parade: International and local

Burlington Teen Tour Band from Ontario, Canada carried the flags of the Canadian provinces and territories in the 2018 Rose Parade.

 

by Laura Berthold Monteros

Marching units come from all over the world to participate in the Tournament of Roses Parade. The bands, with their drill teams, flags, and banners bring international color and music that represents their countries. The different styles or marching, particularly from the Japanese bands that display dance moves along with their music, added flair to the 129th Rose Parade.

The marching entries in this photo gallery include both international and California local units, plus one from Colorado.

  • Kyoto Tachibana High School Green Band, Fushimi-ky, Kyoto, Japan
  • Australia’s Marching Koalas, Newcastle, South New Wales, Australia
  • Air Academy High School Marching Band, Colorado Springs, Colo.
  • Burlington Teen Tour Band, Burlington, Ontario, Canada
  • Homestead High School Mighty Mustang Marching Band, Cupertino, Calif.
  • Banda de Música Herberto López, Chitré, Panama
  • Santiago High School “The Boss” (Bands of the Santiago Sharks), Corona, Calif.

For other articles on marching bands, as well as floats and equestrians, check out the 2018 Rose Parade page.

 

Inspiring health and well-being through beauty in the 2018 Rose Parade

Northwestern Mutual is celebrating five years of its Childhood Cancer Program. “Letting Kids Be Kids” features scenes from camps like ones the kids on the float have attended. Pediatric oncologist and Camp Periwinkle medical director Dr. ZoAnn Dreyer and her husband Dr. Deff Dreyer are on the porch

by Laura Berthold Monteros

Inspiring people to live healthier and happier lives by creating scenes in flowers is a frequent message of Rose Parade floats. The floats in the gallery below presented themes of fun, food, and fearlessness in the 129th Tournament of Roses Parade on Jan. 1, 2018.

Here’s the basic info on each; riders and flowering are in the captions. Be sure to check out the 2018 Rose Parade page for a listing of all the articles about floats on TheRoseExaminer.com.

  • Kaiser Permanente, “Inspiring Healthy Communities,” Fiesta Parade Floats, Stanley Meyer designer
  • Miracle-Gro, “150 Years of Growing,” Fiesta Parade Floats, Stanley Meyer
  • Northwestern Mutual, “Letting Kids Be Kids,” Fiesta Parade Floats, Stanley Meyer
  • The Forum, “The Story Lives On,” Phoenix Decorating Company
  • 24 Hour Fitness, “Proud Sponsor of Everyday Athletes,” AES, John Ramirez designer
  • AIDS Healthcare Foundation, “Keeping the Promise,” Fiesta Parade Floats, Art Aguirre designer
  • Lucy Pet, “Paws for Life,” Fiesta Parade Floats, Mike Abboud designer; here’s a video to go with it: https://youtu.be/C-Opm9b2WDk

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Serving the community: 2018 Rose Parade floats from cities and volunteer organizations

The City of Alhambra celebrated its 90th Rose Parade float with “Story Time,” a salute to the Civic Center Library’s 110th birthday. The bookworm is reading “Tales from the Alhambra,” the source of the city’s name, to his insect buddies.

by Laura Berthold Monteros

Cities and service organizations, such as the ones in the gallery below, present the attractions of their communities and accomplishments of their organizations through the visual impact of Rose Parade floats. These entries brought both beauty and fun to the 129th Tournament of Roses. Here’s the basic info on each; riders and flowering are in the captions. Be sure to check out the 2018 Rose Parade page for a listing of all the articles about floats on TheRoseExaminer.com.

  • Lions Clubs International, “Preserving Our Environment,” Phoenix Decorating Company, Michelle Lofthouse designer
  • South Pasadena Tournament of Roses Association, “Booster Club,” Self-Built
  • City of Alhambra, Calif., “Story Time,” Phoenix Decorating Company, Mike Abboud designer
  • Kiwanis International, “Racing to Serve Children,” Phoenix Decorating Company, Michelle Lofthouse
  • City of Carson, “Honoring the Past – Envisioning Our Future,” Fiesta Parade Floats, Art Aguirre designer
  • Lutheran Laymen’s League, “Bringing Christ to the Nations,” Phoenix Decorating Company, Michelle Lofthouse

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Los Angeles entries in 2018 Rose Parade date back 120 years

The 375-member Los Angeles Unified School District All District High School Honor Band made its 46th appearance in the 129th Tournament of Roses Parade on Jan. 1, 2018.

 

by Laura Berthold Monteros

I will state my bias right up front. I am and always will be an Angeleno. I’ve lived in the Pasadena area for the past few decades, but my hometown is one of the many communities in the megalopolis that is LA. Thus, there is a bit of pride in seeing the longest-standing city entry—it goes back 120 years—rolling down the Tournament of Roses Parade route. The 2018 float was part of a cluster of entries representing Los Angeles. The theme of the 129th Tournament of Roses Parade was “Making a Difference.”

Salvation Army Tournament of Roses Band, based in Long Beach, represents the Greater Los Angeles area. The Salvation Army Church serves in 128 countries. The band invites guest Salvation Army bands from around the world to join them at the Rose Parade; this year, it was a band from Angola, dressed in traditional regalia. This marked the SA band’s 99th consecutive year in the Rose Parade. Kevin Larsson directs the LA band.

Los Angeles Police Department Metropolitan Division Mounted Platoon is committed to children in the Los Angeles area. Members volunteer time with kids in Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and with those who have lost parents in the line of duty. Some of these youngsters walked behind. The unit was joined by an LAPD Honor Guard and the LA Police Emerald Society Bagpipe & Drum Band. This was Chief Charlie Beck’s final Rose Parade appearance. He retired from the LAPD in June, 2018.

The Los Angeles Tourism and Convention Board sponsors float for the City of Los Angeles. “Everyone Is Welcome,” designed by Mike Abboud for Fiesta Parade Floats, expresses the city’s love for and nurturing of one of the most diverse populations in the world. LA welcomes people of every race, culture, and gender identity, who fill the air with hundreds of different languages and the scents of scores of different cuisines in neighborhoods throughout the city.  At least 224 different languages are spoken by people from 140 countries.

Architecture ranges from the quirky lighted pylons at Los Angeles International Airport to the grandeur of the iconic Griffith Park Observatory, which the director calls “LA’s hood ornament” for its perch on Mt. Hollywood. Behind on the float is the Hollywood sign on Mt. Lee, with waving searchlights beckoning people to the city. Annually, LA hosts 47 million people. For flowering and riders, read the captions on the photos.

Los Angeles Unified School District All District High School Honor Band, directed by Tony White, represents the second largest school district in the county. The band was marking its 46th consecutive year in the Rose Parade. LAUSD educates children in neighboring cities, as well as in the City of LA, and the 375 members are drawn from all over the district. The unit reflects the great diversity of the area, both ethnically and economically. The students put in some 400 extra practice hours to be ready for the parade.

The band has five drum majors, 271 brass, 60 percussion, 14 banner carriers, and 30 color guard. Woodwind players in the district can try out for the Pasadena City College Tournament of Roses Honor Band. Assistant Directors and Unit Leaders are Art Duardo, Darnella Davidson, Veronica Gonzalez, Ariel Legaspi, Victoria Lopez, Ramon Mendez, Erick Quintanilla, and Marc Manriquez. Assistants and volunteers are Bladimir Castro, Scott Martin, Danny Barcenas, David Profeta, Kevin Cisneros, Kyle Kawahara, Luis Sanchez, Allan Valladares, Davier Arroyo, Grover Castro. Dose Gamboa, Doselyn Gonzalez, Christian Melgoza, Dose Nava, Amir Parvinian, Miguel Velasquez, and Ernie Sandoval.

 

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Float Design award winners in the 2018 Rose Parade

Torrance Rose Float Association “Protecting Nature…The Madrona Marsh Preserve” by Fiesta Parade Floats won the Mayor Award.

 

by Laura Berthold Monteros

The flower-covered floats in the Float Design category in the Tournament of Roses’ new system of float awards display themes that touch our lives or have specific design elements. The winners in the 2018 Rose Parade are listed in the table below, and descriptions of flowering and animation are in the captions in the photo gallery. It’s a large gallery, but the floats are well worth the clicks.

Some interesting notes on a few of the floats:

  • The Sierra Madre float, its 86th entry, wrote, “Ten years ago we had the first grandmother to drive a Rose Parade float and this year we have the first great-grandmother to drive a Rose Parade float. Kay Sappington, our Chair of Float Decoration, has 13 grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren, and to top it off, parade day is her birthday. The observer, LaDonna Gaydosh, is a grandmother with seven grandchildren.”
  • The new Torrance rose was featured on the Torrance float. Named after the city, it was introduced last year by the American Rose Society to mark its 125th anniversary.
  • La Cañada Flintridge had its own first. Driver Aram Dergharapetian, at 19 years, 5 months old, was LFCTRA’s youngest ever float driver and one of the youngest in Tournament history. 2018 was Aram’s second time on the float; he was the animator on “Backyard Rocketeer” last year. Another note: It’s said to be the only float in the parade equipped with a data recording system, similar to an airplane’s “black box.” Information is stored for analysis and can be viewed in real-time by the float operating crew.
  • The art department at Paradiso Parade Floats worked  on the Donate Life float Aztec calendar for two months, resulting in stunning detail. They researched and adapted the design to incorporate the memorial portraits.
  • “Make Your Own Momentum,” the entry from Amazon Prime and Paradiso, did indeed make its own momentum. It was the only human-powered float in the 129th Rose Parade and the first entry ever to be pushed by people down the 51/2 mile route. (Quite a few years ago, the Odd Fellows and Rebekahs float was a litter carried by several handsome and scantily-clad young men. It was quite the treat!)
2018 FLOAT DESIGN CATEGORY
Award Sponsor “Theme” Builder, Designer
Theme for most outstanding presentation of the parade theme Donate Life “The Gift of Time” Paradiso Parade Floats, Charles Meier
Bob Hope Humor for most whimsical and amusing entry La Cañada Flintridge Tournament of Roses Association “Panda-Monium” Self Built, Renee’ Hoss-Johnson, Brianne Johnson
Director for most outstanding artistic design and floral presentation Odd Fellows and Rebekahs Rose Float “Sacrifice to Serve” Phoenix Decorating Company, Michelle Lofthouse

Note: Write up in the Grand Marshal article.

Crown City Innovator for most outstanding use of imagination, innovation, and technology The Grand Tour–An Amazon Prime Original “Make Your Own Momentum” Paradiso Parade Floats, Charles Meier
Grand Marshal’s for most outstanding creative concept and float design Dole Packaged Foods “Sharing Nature’s Bounty” Fiesta Parade Floats, Stanley Meyer
Fantasy for most outstanding display of fantasy and imagination Sierra Madre Rose Float Association “Chivalry!” Self Built, Joanne Garcia (concept)
Animation for most outstanding use of animation Underground Service Alert of Southern California (DigAlert) “Making It Safe for All” Fiesta Parade Floats, Stanley Meyer
Americana for most outstanding depiction of national treasures and traditions Farmers Insurance Group “Honoring Hometown Heroes” Phoenix Decorating Company, Dave Pittman
Golden State for most outstanding depiction of life in California City of Riverside “25th Annual Festival of Lights” Fiesta Parade Floats, Stanley Meyer
Mayor for most outstanding floral display from a participating city Torrance Rose Float Association “Protecting Nature…The Madrona Marsh Preserve” Fiesta Parade Floats, Irene Tsay (concept) & Art Aguirre

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Burgers and camaraderie at self-built float picnic

Cal Poly Pomona 2019 float team, L-R: Elizabeth Meyer, Nathan Muro, Stephanie Ferreya, Hana Haideri, Caitlin Yaneza, Wolfgang Breitenbach

by Laura Berthold Monteros

One might think that there would be a good deal of competition among the associations that build their own floats for the Tournament of Roses Parade. Indeed there is, but it’s all good-natured. Once a year, they get together for a picnic or potluck at one of the float sites to reveal the designs for the upcoming parade, talk shop, and share information. Your Rose Examiner dropped by the South Pasadena Tournament of Roses Assn. build site on Saturday to chat with some of the folks and glimpse the design sketches for the 2019 parade.

The floats will end up looking a good deal like the sketches, but there will be tweaks along the way, some by the builders as they work on structural and floral elements and some from the TOR Float Committee. With the theme being “The Melody of Life,” there’s an emphasis on incorporating musical elements in each entry. In the case of Sierra Madre Rose Float Assn., acceptance of the design was contingent on adding an instrument to the float. The team added a koto player to “Harmony’s Garden,” a depiction of the Japanese Garden on the grounds of Sierra Madre Elementary School.

Check out the photos below!

Five of the six self-built associations were at the picnic—SPTOR, Burbank Tournament of Roses Assn., La Cañada Flintridge Tournament of Roses Assn., SMRFA, and Cal Poly Pomona—which form a sort of necklace along the foothills. The remaining builder is Downey Rose Float Assn., which is further south. San Luis Obispo, the northern half of the Cal Poly Universities Rose Float, gets together with the Pomona when it rolls down in October.

We met Janetta Mcdowell, the Cal Poly Pomona Rose Float Director, and spoke with six of the students who are on the team this year. Despite all the hours they put in, they get no academic credit. “It’s a club, not a class,” they said. During crunch time towards the end of the year, they will be joined by other volunteers. Here’s a little about the students in the photo above.

  • Elizabeth Meyer is working on the float for her second year, last year as a volunteer and this year as a team member. She works on the hydraulics, a messy job but one that is redolent with the scents of childhood spent with her mechanical grandfather. She’s studying mechanical engineering and working on the float is her senior project.
  • Nathan Muro volunteered for a year before joining the float team two years ago. He is the design committee chair and is majoring in electrical engineering.
  • Stephanie Ferreya is an assistant chair of the design committee and is in her second year on the float. She majors in biology.
  • Hana Haideri is an electrical engineering major; this is her second year on the float team after volunteering for a year.
  • Caitlin Yaneza works on the electronics on the float as part of the construction team. This is her second year on the team. She is a psychology major.
  • Wolfgang Breitenbach is on the team for the first year. His choice was the deco committee, which handles the floral design. His major is manufacturing engineering, which he simplified for us by saying that it about automation and assembly lines.

Cal Poly Universities are known for engineering and agriculture, so we asked if anyone was an agriculture major. The head of the decorating committee, which is in charge of ensuring that floral and botanical choices are made, fulfilled, and get on the float, is an ag major, we were told.

The all-volunteer associations are very proud that they give the professional builders a run for their money. One of the Burbank volunteers noted that the only trophy designated for self-builts is the Founder Award, but in recent years, self-builts have frequently taken four or five trophies overall. In 2016, all six groups won awards. For long-time Rose Parade aficionados, the self-builts are the heart of the parade. It will be exciting to see how they fare in 2019.