Pasadena is getting ready for the biggest event of the year- Tournament of Roses Parade! Folks are already setting up their mini camps in the center divider as I'm driving down Sierra Madre and along the Colorado Blvd. It's fun to see so many people getting into the Rose Parade spirit! The first Rose Parade took place in 1890 and was attended by 2000 people. The attendance has grown to close to one million over the last few years.
Interesting Facts about Rose Parade:
- Rose Parade does not always take place on New Year's Day. The Tournament has a "never on a Sunday" deal, struck with local churches, that ensures the parade takes place on January 2 in years when Jan. 1 falls on Sunday. Local lore says that the deal has kept the parade free from rain, but a torrent soaked fans in 2006, after more than 40 rain-free years. (Ironically, that parade ran on Jan. 2, the day after a rain-free Sunday.)
- All the filming takes place on the corner of Orange Grove and Colorado. Everyone participating in the Parade is on their best behavior and in their finest. This is pretty much the beginning of the 5 mile route.
- Floats retract to pass under the Interstate 210 overpass, then park on the street next to Victory Park for two days of post-parade float viewing.
- Tournament of Roses takes about 80,000 hours of combined manpower each year.
- Volunteers wear white uniforms and are known as "white suiters". Be kind to them. They give up quite a bit of their time to make the Tournament of Roses Parade a success.
- Sidewalk camping is allowed on New Year's Eve only. Campers can officially set up beginning at noon on December 31. See Rose Parade Safety Guidelines.
- Parade starts at 8 am and usually lasts 2.5 hours.
Most Pasadena locals, however, enjoy the Rose Parade from the comfort of their homes. Of course, there are some die-hards who make this a family tradition. Here is a bit of the insider perspective: