Rose Parade tickets and parking for 2017 Tournament of Roses

Rose phone tixby Laura Berthold Monteros

The theme of the 128th Tournament of Roses Parade is “Echoes of Success,” which could be a reminder that to be successful in getting there, parade-goers should mark their calendars for Monday, Jan. 2, 2017.  Everyone knows that “America’s New Year Celebration” is held on Jan. 1, right?  Usually, but not when the date falls on a Sunday. Nothing to worry about, though, because Sharp Seating Company has the same great seats for sale.

The official grandstand seating provider for the Rose Parade, Sharp sells tickets in person, over the phone at (626) 795-4171, or online for the parade, parking, and other events. The sales office is located at 737 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena; enter from the rear parking lot off Meridith Ave.  Grandstand seats and parking are also available beginning in the fall at Pasadena Presbyterian Church, on the northwest corner of Colorado Blvd. and Madison Ave., (626) 793-2191, ext. 353.

Prices at Sharp Seating range from $48 to $95, depending on the location on the route. Seats on the north and west, or “off-camera,” sides of the route are generally less expensive.  Sharp now divides the Rose Parade route into five sections:

  • Area One (between the start on S. Orange Grove and Colorado Blvd. at Fair Oaks), $85-$95. This is the prime location where media are stationed and within walking distance of the Rose Bowl.  Please note that the $85 seats are along the formation area on Orange Grove.  Some of the groups may not be performing in that section, but people seated in the grandstands will see all the entries.
  • Area Two (on Colorado Blvd. between Fair Oaks and Lake Avenues), $68.  Guests may also preorder a pancake breakfast for $8 from First United Methodist Church on the Sharp website.
  • Area Three (on Colorado Blvd. between Lake and Hill Avenues), $58-$68
  • Area Four (on Colorado Blvd. between Hill and Allen Avenues), $50-$68
  • Area Five (on Colorado Blvd. between Allen Ave. and Sierra Madre Blvd.), $50-$68

Portable restrooms for Sharp patrons are located behind the grandstands.  Pasadena Presbyterian offers indoor restrooms and a continental breakfast is included in the price.  Rose Parade programs can be ordered in advance from Sharp Seating, the Pasadena Museum of History gift shop and the Tournament of Roses, or picked up onsite from Pasadena Presbyterian Church and various supermarkets and drugstores in the Pasadena and Altadena area a few weeks before the parade.


Both Sharp Seating and Pasadena Presbyterian Church sell reserved parking, as well as Easy Parking Service (626) 286-7576 and the City of Pasadena (626) 744-6470.  Easy Parking Service provides free shuttles to the Rose Bowl from the parking lot.  Overnight RV parking is also available.  Closer to parade time, some merchants list parking on Craigslist.

Rose Parade event tickets for Bandfest, Equestfest, Decorating Places, Showcase of Floats

Bandfest 2013; copyright Laura B Monteros
Bandfest 2013; copyright Laura B Monteros

by Laura Berthold Monteros

Visitors and Pasadena locals can celebrate the 128th Rose Parade “Echoes of Success” for an entire week. Pre-parade float viewing, field shows featuring the marching bands, an arena show with equestrians, and post-parade float viewing offer something for everyone.  Just remember that the dates are a bit different for the 2017 parade, because the “never on Sunday rule” applies and the Rose Parade will step off on Monday, Jan. 2, 2017.

Sharp Seating Company is the official ticket vendor for these events.  Tickets can be purchased online, over the phone at (626) 795-4171 and in person at 737 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena (enter in the rear parking lot off Meridith Ave.).  Children ages five and under are free at all events except Equestfest VIP seating.  Tickets are also available at the venues, but some events sell out ahead of time.

Decorating Places (pre-parade float viewing) sponsored by Giti Tires, Dec. 28, 2016-Jan. 1, 2017, $5 to $15
Deco Week is second only the Rose Parade in the excitement it generates in Pasadena.  Floats in the final stages of decoration are on view in three locations for visitors to see how thousands of volunteers hustle to get every last seed or flower on the floats in preparation for final judging.  The ticket price depends on the day of attendance, and provides entry to all three locations.  Times vary by day and location; check the website for details. Continue reading “Rose Parade event tickets for Bandfest, Equestfest, Decorating Places, Showcase of Floats”

Marching bands participating the 2017 Rose Parade

LAUSD Honor Band in the 2016 Rose Parde; photo copyright Ramona Monteros
LAUSD Honor Band in the 2016 Rose Parde; photo copyright 2016 Ramona Monteros

by Laura Berthold Monteros

Nineteen marching bands will appear in the 128th Rose Parade on Jan. 2, 2017. The bands are chosen more than a year before the parade, but this year will feature a special last-minute entry. The US Air Force Band, celebrating its 70th anniversary in 2017, has been included at the request of Pres. Brad Ratliff. Two additional units, representing the universities chosen to send teams to the 103rd Rose Bowl Game, will be announced in December.

Volunteers from the Tournament of Roses audition the bands two years in advance of the parade, so the groups have time to raise funds for travel, accommodations, and visits to local attractions, and for foreign units, to secure passports and visas. Pres. Ratliff, who plays trumpet, French horn and ukulele himself, visited each band to issue a formal invitation and sit in with his trumpet.

Selected units must demonstrate outstanding musicianship, marching ability, and entertainment or special interest value. They must also train for the rigorous 5 ½-mile parade and one of the three Bandfest shows in the days preceding the Rose Parade, which can take place in temperatures from 32 degrees to 85 degrees. The process begins with an application and a packet of photos, videos and letters of recommendation. Applications for the 2018 Rose Parade are now available on the Tournament of Roses website.

Continue reading “Marching bands participating the 2017 Rose Parade”

2017 Rose Parade Royal Court tryouts

2016 Royal Court: Sarah Shaklan, Rachelle Liu, Bryce Bakewell, Erika Winter, Regina Pullens, Natalie Hernandez-Barber, Donaly Marquez. c2016LBMonteros
2016 Royal Court: Sarah Shaklan, Rachelle Liu, Bryce Bakewell, Erika Winter, Regina Pullens, Natalie Hernandez-Barber, Donaly Marquez. c2016LBMonteros

by Laura Berthold Monteros

What does it take to be a Rose Princess in the 128th Rose Parade? Former princesses and queens say pretty much the same thing: be confident, be genuine, be yourself. We might add that being involved in community and school service is important, as is a positive attitude.  The Tournament of Roses is looking for seven young women to serve on the 2017 Royal Court and ride down Colorado Blvd. in on Jan. 2.  One of these girls will become the 99th Rose Queen.  Applications are available beginning Aug. 1 on the Royal Court webpage.


The first round of tryouts is held over two days, Saturday, Sept. 10 from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., and Monday, Sept. 12 from 3 p.m. to 5 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.

Continue reading “2017 Rose Parade Royal Court tryouts”

2017 Rose Parade equestrian line up announced


by Laura Berthold Monteros

Medieval Times at 2016 Rose Parade. copyright Ramona Monteros.
Medieval Times at 2016 Rose Parade. Copyright Ramona Monteros.

The 20 equestrian groups that will participate in the 128th Tournament of Roses Parade on Jan. 2, 2017 were announced today. There are some old favorites, some newcomers, and some returning groups. Missing after 68 years of riding down Colorado Blvd. is the Long Beach Mounted Police, but the Victorian Roses Ladies Riding Society, which last rode in the 2015 Rose Parade, is back. The eight new groups in the list are marked with a .

Equestrians are chosen to showcase different breeds, costumes, and tack as well as for their ability to entertain the crowds along the parade route.  All riders must have previous parade experience.  The units are invited to participate in Equestfest presented by Wells Fargo on Dec. 29, 2015 at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center.  Equestfest is an opportunity for groups to show off their riding, roping and shooting skills.  The stables are open for visitors. Sharp Seating has tickets available on their website. Continue reading “2017 Rose Parade equestrian line up announced”

History Lit trio of plays at Pasadena Museum of History

Elyse Ashton and Morgan Zenith in “The Girl Who Owned a Bear” in the History Lit production at Pasadena Museum of History. Credit: Daniel Kitayama


by Laura Berthold Monteros

Three carefully chosen plays offer a spectrum of emotions in Unbound Productions History Lit at Pasadena Museum of History through July 31. This is the second time the company has mounted a trio of adapted short stories reflecting various historical periods at the museum. History Lit is immersive theater, where the action takes place in close proximity to the audience and the venue enhances the stories. Two of the plays, “The Garden Party” and “Two Pictures in One” were originally presented four years ago, and one, “The Girl Who Owned a Bear,” makes its debut.

Jonathan Josephson’s adaptation of a short story from American Fairy Tales by L. Frank Baum, “The Girl Who Owned a Bear” is a delightful confection that utilizes the current exhibit at PMH, “Flying Horses & Mythical Beasts: The Magical World of Carousel Animals.” It was the perfect setting for the fanciful tale of…well, you have to see it, but let’s just say that it’s the story of a resourceful and imaginative, if a bit spoiled, young lady who does not like to read. Morgan Zenith captured the credulity of Jane Gladys and Chairman Barnes brought humor to the affable author Peter Smith. Elyse Ashton, Mark Bate, and Melissa Perl played creatures only Baum could have dreamed up.
Continue reading “History Lit trio of plays at Pasadena Museum of History”

Starting up!

A work in progress! But we are just taking off. We’ll soon be flying in with articles with info for folks who live in and visit Pasadena, Tournament of Roses fans, and just about anything that piques our interest. Meanwhile, be sure to check in with All Things Rose Parade on Facebook. Thanks!