Image: AP Photo/Patrick T. Fallon
The 124th Rose Parade took place on January 1 in Pasadena, California. Often referred to as the Rose Bowl Parade, the event was presented by Honda and themed “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!” and featured marching bands, floral floats and equestrian units.
The Rose Parade started at 8 a.m. and was broadcasted on ABC, Hallmark Channel, HGTV, KTLA, NBC, RFD-TV and Univision. According to the Parade’s website, this year’s event was seen in more than 220 international territories and countries. The Huffington Post reports that a couple married on what was dubbed the “Love Float” and a surprise reunion was held between a returning soldier and his son. Renowned chimpanzee researcher Jane Goodall acted as grand marshal. According to Pasadena’s Tournament of Rose’s website, “the annual naming of the Grand Marshal is a traditional duty of the president of the Pasadena Tournament of Roses…Past honorees have been actors, astronauts, writers, artists, athletes and political figures,” including Mary Pickford, Dwight Eisenhower, Bob Hope, Kate Smith, Walt Disney, Shirley Temple Black, Bob Newhart, Angela Lansbury, Tom Brokaw and Bill Cosby.
Goodall said, “My dream for this New Year’s Day is for everyone to think of the places we can all go if we work together to make our world a better place. Every journey starts with a step and I am pleased to see the Tournament of Roses continue to take steps toward not only celebrating beauty and imagination, but also a cleaner environment.”
The parade included 42 floral floats, 23 marching bands, 21 equestrian units and approximately 700,000 spectators along a 5.5-mile route that started at Green Street & Orange Grove.
Parade rules dictate that “every inch of the floats must be covered with flowers or plant material, most of it applied by volunteers in the last weeks of December”, according to The Huffington Post.