Tournament of Roses announces 2018 float judges: Carrión, Kaye, Sutton

María Eugenia Carrión, Bradley Kaye, and James Sutton will choose the 2018 Rose Parade float trophy winners

 

by Laura Berthold Monteros (from reports)

The three judges chosen by the Tournament of Roses to award trophies to floats in the 129th Rose Parade on Jan. 1, 2018 have impressive backgrounds in floral design, horticulture, floats, and pageantry, and they all fit the theme “Making a Difference.” The judges are María Eugenia Carrion, Bradley Kaye, and Jim Sutton.

They will award trophies to 24 of the 40-45 floats that participate in the parade using the updated award criteria for 2018, which include creative design, floral craftsmanship, artistic merit, computerized animation, thematic interpretation, floral and color presentation, and dramatic impact.

The 2018 Tournament of Roses President, Lance Tibbet said, “Being a horticultural professional, managing and owning a wholesale nursery, it’s an honor to welcome these professionals to the Tournament family. I’m excited to have these very talented members of the floral and design professions judge our floats this year.” He will announce the award-winning floats the morning of the parade on the front steps of Tournament House.

About the 2018 Rose Parade Float Judges

María Eugenia Carrión comes by her talent naturally. The daughter of Luis Justo Carrión Tejeda, a pioneer of the professional floriculture in México, “Maru” has been in the industry since 1968 when she began as Sales Manager of her father’s company, Viveros Mexicanos, S.A. She opened her first retail shop, Enviflora in Mexico City in 1979. In 1996, Carrión was the first Mexican accepted into the American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD) and to earn the European Master Certification (EMC) in Belgium in 2014.

As one of the few Mexican designers who had the opportunity to study abroad, Carrión has made a difference by actively working to bring the EMC to Mexico. EMC provides the knowledge and tools to appropriately express feelings through flowers while applying key design elements and principles. She has also promoted continuous education and strengthening ties among industry participants.

Bradley Kaye has been with Disney Parks Live Entertainment since 1998, starting with the Tokyo DisneySea opening entertainment design, and now as Principal Art Director based at the California Disney Resort. In addition to key projects in Disney parks around the world and on Disney cruise ships, Kaye designed the 2006 and 2013 Rose Parade floats for Disney. He has also worked on parades at the Disney properties and designed Disney floats for the Shanghai Tourism Festival parade.

Kaye makes a difference by donating his time designing shows for Chance Theater in Anaheim,  as well as having designed the lobby and marquee for their new venue. He serves on the advisory board for the Laguna Niguel Community Theatre, consulting on their shows, outreach program, and working with their volunteers in mentoring young design students.

Jim Sutton is the Display Designer for Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, Pa. Founded by Pierre S. du Pont, Longwood is one of the world’s great gardens, encompassing 1,077 acres of gardens, woodlands, meadows, fountains and a 4-acre conservatory complex. Sutton is the aesthetic gatekeeper for Longwood, responsible for conception, designing, and implementing Longwood’s renowned Conservatory displays. His aesthetic expertise and plant savvy have made him a sought-after judge at the prestigious Philadelphia International Flower Show and for the America in Bloom program, which promotes community enhancement programs through the use of flowers, plants, and trees.

Sutton made a difference as a former Peace Corps volunteer in Honduras. He implemented and demonstrated techniques for soil conservation and improvement and taught environmental awareness during his two-year assignment. In addition to his design role, Sutton teaches courses in floral design in Longwood’s Continuing Education Program and lectures on horticultural topics across the country.

 

Bandfest show schedule for 2018 Rose Parade marching units

Pasadena City College takes the field at Bandfest

by Laura Berthold Monteros

Rose Parade bands are not only required to march 5 ½ miles in the Rose Parade on New Year’s Day, they prepare elaborate field shows for Bandfest Presented by Remo. There are three shows over two days, with different marching units at each one. Only the Pasadena City College Tournament of Roses Honor Band, as  host, plays in all three. The shows are performed in Robinson Stadium at Pasadena City College. Parking is free in the PPC structure at Hill and Del Mar. Tickets are $15 per person (children age 5 and under are free) and are available at the venue.

Some tips:

  • Purchase tickets in advance from Sharp Seating. The shows sell out quickly.
  • Arrive early, allowing time to find a parking space, walk to the stadium, and be seated in time for the Remo Drums of the World drum-along.
  • Don’t forget to grab a program and little drum on the way in!
  • Seating is on the north side of the stadium, so the southern sun hits it most of the day. It can be very hot, but when the sun starts to set, it can suddenly cool down. Bring water and wear layers and sunscreen.
  • Food and beverages are available from vendors onsite, and there are several eateries across the street from the campus on the north side of Colorado Blvd.

SHOW SCHEDULE (subject to change)

Bandfest 1, Friday, Dec. 29, 2017 at 1:30 pm

Air Academy High School – Air Academy High School Marching Band (USAF Academy, CO)

Australia’s Marching Koalas (Dangar, New South Wales, Australia)

Banda De Música Herberto López – Colegio José Daniel Crespo (Chitré, Herrera, Republic of Panamá)

Homestead High School – Homestead High School Mighty Mustang Marching Band (Cupertino, CA)

Pasadena City College Tournament of Roses Honor Band & Herald Trumpets (Pasadena, CA)

Pennsbury High School – Pennsbury High School “Long Orange Line” Marching Band (Fairless Hills, PA)

Santiago High School – The BOSS (Bands of Santiago Sharks) (Corona, CA)

University of Massachusetts – University of Massachusetts Minuteman Marching Band (Amherst, MA)

Bandfest 2, Saturday, Dec. 30, 2017 at 9:30 am

Albertville High School – Albertville High School “Aggie” Band (Albertville, AL)

Lindbergh High School – Lindbergh “Spirit of St. Louis” Marching Band (St. Louis, MO)

Ronald Reagan High School – Ronald Reagan High School Band (San Antonio, TX)

The Salvation Army Tournament of Roses Band (Los Angeles, CA)

Pasadena City College Tournament of Roses Honor Band & Herald Trumpets (Pasadena, CA)

Westlake High School – Westlake High School Marching Thunder (Saratoga Springs, UT)

United States Marine Corps West Coast Composite Band – MCAS Miramar, MCRD San Diego and Camp Pendleton, CA

Rose Bowl Game University Band TBD

Bandfest 3, Saturday, Dec. 30, 2017 at 2:00 pm

City of Burlington – Burlington Teen Tour Band (Burlington, Ontario, Canada)

Kyoto Tachibana High School – Kyoto Tachibana High School Green Band (Kyoto, Japan)

Pasadena City College Tournament of Roses Honor Band & Herald Trumpets (Pasadena, CA)

Los Angeles Unified School District – All District High School Honor Band (Los Angeles, CA)

Londonderry High School – Londonderry High School Marching Band & Color Guard (Londonderry, NH)

Louisburg High School – Louisburg High School Marching Wildcat Band (Louisburg, KS)

“The Commandant’s Own” The United States Marine Drum & Bugle Corps (Washington, DC)

Rose Bowl Game University Band TBD

Hobnobbing with Rose Parade royalty in Pasadena

At last Friday’s reception for “Royals of Pasadena” at Pasadena Museum of History, 20 former and three current Royal Court members gave the classic Rose Parade wave.

 

by Laura Berthold Monteros

The invitation said “Royal attire encouraged.” The Rose Examiner did not have royal attire, but we were in the courtly spirit at the reception for members of the Rose Parade Royal Court, past and present, at Pasadena Museum of History’s exhibit “Royals of Pasadena” on Sept. 8. More than 20 Rose Queens and Princesses attended. Each one received a special tiara from Laura Verlaque, Director of Collections as she entered. We were able to talk with several of the Royals, as well as one of the curators of the exhibit.

Be sure to check out the photo gallery in this article, and the stories of the Rose Queen crowns in the article below.

Gowns and wardrobe items were solicited from members of Royal Courts across the decades. Verlaque said that originally, PMH was going to send letters to the entire list of prior Court members that the Tournament of Roses had provided. Then, right before the letters were to go out, she realized that was a tremendous number of women, so the requests were limited to those who still lived in California. Even with that, 75 gowns were offered.

Elissa De Angelo is one of a group of volunteers who preserve the textiles in the PMH collection, and prepare them for display. As the dresses came in, she altered the mannequins to fit the dresses. “Boobs, shoulder pads, clothes from each decade were worn differently,” she said. Some of the dresses had to be cleaned or steamed, with care to the kind of fabric. She said a hair dryer was used to blow the dust off silk garments, because silk could not be cleaned.

“The French Hand Laundry was very helpful with offering expertise,” De Angelo said. (The business, a Pasadena fixture, has operated since 1912.) For more about PMH textile exhibits, read “Fabulous Fashions” (pdf).

She called our attention to the most recent dress, a sapphire gown worn by 2017 Rose Princess Shannon Larsuel. Asked if any of the queens had worn their dresses in their weddings, she directed us to the 1949 white gown worn by Queen Virginia Bower. Both are pictured in the photo gallery.

Beverlie Anderson MacDuff was a Rose Princess in Queen Virginia’s court. “I had a wonderful time,” she said. “I’ve always been happy that I was a princess.” Born in Pasadena, Princess Beverlie said she went to the Rose Parade “a babe in arms.” She never missed a parade after that.

 

All photos copyright 2017 by Laura Berthold Monteros

Crowning the Rose Parade Queens: Photo gallery

by Laura Berthold  Monteros

Since the first Rose Queen graced the flower-bedecked float that carried her along the Rose Parade route on Jan. 2, 1905 (the first was a Sunday), there have been different crowns for different eras. Some of the early queens did not have crowns, and wore garlands or hats instead. The Pasadena Museum of History has several on display in its “Royals of Pasadena” exhibit, now through Feb. 11, 2018.

A special crown was created exclusively for the 50th Rose Queen, but the Tournament of Roses tells us that the 100th Rose Queen will continue to wear the Mikimoto pearl crown. A couple of Tournament members, one formerly the chair of the Queen & Court Committee, noted how heavy this crown is. “Did you see how Tori’s head went back?” one asked, recalling Queen Victoria’s coronation last fall. She had to stand very straight to keep it balanced.

Click through the photos for descriptions of each crown, including who wore it. Do you have a favorite? Use the comments to give your opinion. We would also love to hear from Rose Queens about the crowns they wore! Unless otherwise credited, photos are by Joann Wilborn/Marlyn Woo and are copyrighted.

Royal Court hopefuls line up for an opportunity to be a princess in the 2018 Rose Parade

2017 Princesses Natalie Rose Petrosian, Lauren “Emi” Emiko Powers, and Maya Kawaguchi Khan performed one of the final Royal Court duties of orienting the hundreds of girls who were trying out for 2018.

 

by Laura Berthold Monteros

For many teenage girls living in the Pasadena area, trying out for the Tournament of Roses Royal Court is a family or school tradition. They come with their friends and each has a story about why she wants to represent the Tournament and the community in the 129th Rose Parade on Jan. 1, 2018 and throughout the year. Seven young women will be chosen to promote the 2018 theme “Making a Difference” by serving for a year on the 2018 Royal Court. One of those seven will become the 100th Rose Queen, an event so monumental that Pasadena Museum of History has an exhibit dedicated to the Royal Court.

We spoke with some of the teens who came on a beautiful Saturday morning with a cool high for the day of 90 degrees—much nicer than the 100+ temperatures of past tryouts. We caught them before their turn in front of the panel of judges to say, in a few seconds, why they wanted to be on the Court. They had a bit more time with The Rose Examiner! Here, with their photos, are their comments. Be sure to check out the gallery, too, which has lots of photos of the event. All the articles on the Royal Court are linked on this dedicated page as they are posted.

Olivia and Reagan

 

Olivia and Reagan attend La Cañada Flintridge High School. Olivia is a recipient of the Gold Award, the highest honor in Girl Scouts. She “loves volunteering,” and said serving on the Royal Court “would be the perfect icing on the cake.” She added that it would be a great experience to have. Reagan said she was very excited about the tryouts. “I’m a little nervous, actually,” she admitted. She thought about what she would say to the judges, “but I don’t want to sound too scripted.”

 

Savannah, Celine, Kasen, Jennifer, Delia, Bridgitte

Savannah and Celine attend AGBU Vatche & Tamar Manoukian High School in Pasadena (hereafter referred to as AGBU) and Kasen, Jennifer, Delia, and Bridgitte attend Arcadia High School. All of the girls understood the effect they could in the community. Savannah wants to promote equality for all, and Kasen, Jennifer, and Bridgette would like to inspire other youth. “I want to set a good example for them to live out their dreams,” Jennifer said. Delia would like to be a role model by “projecting self-confidence to young girls.” Celine took a different tack: She lives in the moment, she said, and relishes the experience of trying out for the Royal Court.

 

Kristen and Danielle

Kristen and Danielle are students at Marshall Fundamental High School in Pasadena. They talked about how they might make a difference on the Royal Court. “I’m part of the National Charity League,” Kristen said, “so I contribute a lot of time. With this, I can help even more.” Danielle said she has made a difference in her work with teaching swim classes and water safety to children.

 

Lara and Danielle

Lara, a student at AGBU, said, “I feel like being an Armenian on the Court would bring awareness to the Armenian community.” She noted that there is a large Armenian population in Pasadena, and we discussed that it goes back to the early years of the 20th century. She was proud that the American Armenian Rose Float Association would have a fourth float in the 2018 parade. Danielle attends Arcadia High School. “I really would enjoy this opportunity to inspire young girls,” she said, and to “really make a difference” in the community.

 

Ashley, James, Samantha

 

We always like to talk to at least one boy in the line. Ashley, James, and Samantha all attend La Salle High School in Pasadena. Sometimes the guys come just to get the pair of tickets to the Royal Ball that all applicants receive, but James assured us that he had more on his mind. Speaking with a polite tone, he said, “I’m here to make a difference. I’m here because this is a Tournament that seems to be sexist.” He isn’t the first young man to express that thought! Ashley (L.) said that the diversity and service she found speaks to her  heart. Samantha wants to represent student athletes. “I want bring something new,” she said. “I want to represent those who excel in their sports.”

 

Simone and Cathy

 

Simone, from Marshall, came with her mom Cathy. Born and raised in this city, Simone said. “I’m here today because I love Pasadena,” adding that she will “bring a positive energy to the Royal Court. I hope to get to the next round. I’m happy to be  here!”

 

Mariajosé and Kimberley

Mariajosé attends John Muir High School in Pasadena and Kimberley goes to Marshall. Mariajosé said, “I just want to try out. Everyone’s been talking about it in school.” She inspired The Rose Examiner with her candor when she added, “This is the first time doing something out of my comfort zone.” As we walk down the line, we can only speak with a few girls. Kimberley, with her rose-bedecked dress, stood out. “I wanted to show who I am,” she said. My culture shows who I am, and this dress shows my culture, because of the flowers.”

 

Filling out an application, standing in a long line in the sun, crowding onto the Tournament House porch for orientation, walking—usually nervously—up to a panel of 10 or 11 judges, and leaving Tournament House with a poster after a tour is a rite of passage for hundreds of girls who live within the boundaries of Pasadena City College. Some come to be with friends or for the experience, some come with grander ideas in mind. Some, like Lara and Kimberley, are proud of their culture and how it contributes to who they are as individuals. Some, like James, want to make a point. For some, like Mariajosé, it is a personal challenge. For writers like  The Rose Examiner, it is inspirational.

 

All photos copyright 2017 Laura B. Monteros

 

129th TOURNAMENT OF ROSES CALENDAR

“ROYALS OF PASADENA” THROUGH FEB. 11, 2018

At Pasadena Museum of History, 470 W. Walnut St. at Orange Grove, Pasadena. See crowns, gowns, photos, and memorabilia of the Rose Queen in honor of the 100 young women who have held that office. See PMH website for days, hours, and admission, or read “Even after 100 years, a Rose Queen is forever.”

THURSDAY, DEC. 28, 2017

Decorating Places (pre-parade float viewing), 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Rosemont Pavilion, 700 Seco St., Pasadena and Rose Float Plaza South, 5400 Irwindale Ave., Irwindale. See the floats in the final stages of preparation for the Rose Parade. Tickets can be purchased online at Sharp Seating Company for $15. People interested in working on the floats should contact the various float builders.

FRIDAY, DEC. 29, 2017

Decorating Places (pre-parade float viewing), 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Rosemont Pavilion, 700 Seco St., Pasadena and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Rose Float Plaza South, 5400 Irwindale Ave., Irwindale.

Live on Green, 9 a.m. at Pasadena Convention Center, 300 E. Green St., Pasadena. Free activities, exhibits, and shows for all ages.

Equestfest, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. with the show beginning at high noon at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center. Tickets sold on site or online at Sharp Seating for $15 per person (age 5 and under free).

Bandfest, 1:30 p.m. at Pasadena City College. Parking is free; tickets on site or online at Sharp Seating for $15 per person (age 5 and under free).

SATURDAY, DEC. 30, 2017

Live on Green, 9 a.m. at Pasadena Convention Center, 300 E. Green St., Pasadena.

Bandfest, 9 a.m. at Pasadena City College.

Decorating Places (pre-parade float viewing), 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Rosemont Pavilion, 700 Seco St., Pasadena and Rose Float Plaza South, 5400 Irwindale Ave., Irwindale.

Bandfest, 2 p.m. at Pasadena City College.

SUNDAY, DEC. 31, 2017

Live on Green, 9 a.m. at Pasadena Convention Center, 300 E. Green St., Pasadena.

Decorating Places (pre-parade float viewing), 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Rosemont Pavilion, 700 Seco St., Pasadena ONLY.

MONDAY, JAN. 1, 2018

129th Tournament of Roses Parade, promptly at 8 a.m., Colorado Blvd. between Orange Grove and Sierra Madre. Tickets can be purchased from Sharp Seating. Television coverage is on KTLA (live broadcast has no commercials, ABC, Hallmark Channel, HGTV, NBC, RFD-TV, Univision, and internationally. Check here for the list.

Showcase of Floats, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., Sierra Madre and Washington boulevards by Victory Park. Tickets on site or from Sharp Seating, $15 per person (age 5 and under free) including Park-N-Ride fare. Street parking is free or paid in local lots. Park-N-Ride shuttles are available at Pasadena City College, 1570 E. Colorado Blvd.

104th Rose Bowl Game presented by Northwestern Mutual, 1 p.m. at the Rose Bowl. Television coverage on ESPN and ESPN Deportes; radio broadcast on ESPN Radio and XM Satellite Radio.

TUESDAY, JAN. 2, 2018

Showcase of Floats, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sierra Madre and Washington boulevards by Victory Park. Gates open for seniors and disabled visitors at 7 a.m. Tickets on site or from Sharp Seating, $15 per person (age 5 and under free) including Park-N-Ride fare. Street parking is free or paid in local lots. Park-N-Ride shuttles are available at Pasadena City College, 1570 E. Colorado Blvd.

 

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

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.)

2018 Royal Court

Rose Queen crown by Mikimoto. c. 2011 LBM

 

 

All the latest and historical articles on the Tournament of Roses Royal Court

 

All photos are copyrighted. Please contact Administrator for permissions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hobnobbing with Rose Parade royalty in Pasadena

Crowning the Rose Parade Queens: Photo gallery

Royal Court hopefuls line up for an opportunity to be a princess in the 2018 Rose Parade

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

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

One out of 7: How the Rose Queen is chosen from the Royal Court

Tournament of Roses inspires a middle-school mystery filled with suspense and danger

 

 

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”