Rose Parade volunteers putting in last-minute scramble to finish floats

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Wednesday, December 28, 2022
Rose Parade volunteers scrambling to finish floats
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With just days to go before the 134th Tournament of Roses parade, it's crunch time for the volunteers who are still working hard to prepare their floats.

PASADENA, Calif. (KABC) -- With just days to go before the 134th Tournament of Roses parade, it's crunch time for the volunteers who are still working hard - welding, cutting and painting - to get their floats ready.

Stefan Pollack with Fiesta Parade Floats says they expect some 400 volunteers per shift at their Irwindale facility, meaning thousands of people are coming through the doors this week.

"Jan. 2 is not movable, so we will get it done on time for sure," Pollack says.

The Rose Parade is normally held on New Year's Day, but the event has had a "never on Sunday" rule since 1893, so it will be held on Monday, Jan. 2 this time.

Volunteers are busy preparing a host of organic materials - kidney beans, sesame seeds, coconut, white rice and of course, plenty of flowers - to painstakingly and lovingly place on the floats.

There's always more help needed, so to volunteer to help with floats, click here.

Cal Poly students collaborating from separate campuses on Rose Parade float

In Pasadena, a group of college students from two campuses hundreds of miles apart are collaborating on the parade's only student entry.

Cal Poly Pomona and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo students are working together on an entry titled "Road to Reclamation." The float's theme is expressing the idea of nature recycling and reclaiming itself, as demonstrated by a tree branch that falls to the ground one day but is sooning teeming with life again as a new community of organisms make it their home.

Rose Parade: Here's what you need to know if you're planning to go

"Road to reclamation: Road is an acknowledgment this is not an instantaneous process. You'll see a fallen tree branch one day and then come back and then you've got this amazing scene the next," said student Annie Doody, who is leading the Cal Poly San Luis Obispo team.

The two schools are some 200 miles apart but their students found ways to collaborate throughout the whole year, meeting multiple times a week to plan and design the float, said Ryan Ward, who leads the Pomona campus team. That includes fabrication efforts during the summer and continuing to work even as they had to study for finals in the winter just as the parade date was fast approaching.

The Rose Parade will be covered live on ABC7 on Monday, Jan. 2 starting at 8 a.m.