and our city float.
My Rose Parade day began New Year's Eve at 7 PM for preliminary judging. I arrived at the float building tent in full costume that had been rented from The Western Costume Co. in Hollywood. I took my place on top of the float and depicted the scene of the artist's rendering.
On Dec. 26th the float decorating had begun. For the past 4 years I had been a volunteer with my church group and spent the week between holidays from sun up to midnight freezing while gluing on flowers and seeds on award winning floats. They would announce over the PA system when a float was complete. It was always such a relief to finish early in the evening since the floats had to be driven over to Pasadena by a certain time. The announcements started to come in while I was there and I could understand the volunteers' excitement and satisfaction.
3 AM was the final judging on Orange Grove Blvd. where the floats were lined up in order. This was when the judges decided which floats would be given coveted awards whose banners would proceed the float along the lengthy 2 1/2 hour parade route.
New Year's Eve in Pasadena is usually cold. It was so cold in the pre-dawn that I wore jeans under my dress with oxford shoes. I don't think Revolution era ladies did that in 1776.
Step off was at 8 AM!
My float broke down just past the corner of Orange Grove and Colorado where all the television cameras were set up. At least I made it that far.
I shared the float with 4 Marines. One of the Marines lifted me off the float and I rode in the tow truck for awhile then they decided to put me back on the float while we were being towed.
Ooh - rah!
The day was made very special for me by my favorite uncle and his family who bought tickets in the grandstands. They stood up and waved as I floated by. They came all the way from Las Vegas just to see me do this. It was so fun to see someone I knew.
My boyfriend at the time waited for me at the end of the parade. He didn't know what side of the street I was on so he kept crossing until a police officer told him not to do it again. When I passed by on the right, he was on the left. He took me home in his little MGBGT ~ hoop skirt and all.
When I arrived back home in the early afternoon I was so tired I could hardly stand for a picture by our Meyer lemon tree.
We watched all the re-runs we could find over the next day or two to hear my name which was broadcast worldwide.
It was my 15 seconds of fame and a memory I'll have forever.
Wishing all my wonderful blog friends a very happy, healthy, and prosperous New Year that is coming up roses!