Rose Bowl and Parade

By Jocelyn H.
Ever wonder why the Americans have a parade filled with floats and then a football game at the beginning of the year? That’s because we start off the New Year with some celebrations. This year was the 124th Rose Parade and the 99th Rose Bowl college football game.
These activities are never held on Sunday because in the 19th century, the floats used to scare the horses along the route, which in turn would interrupt church attendees and interfered with worship services. So, the parade and game are never held on a Sunday even if the first of the year lands on a Sunday.
The football game, on the other hand, is a college football competition, so it doesn’t  interfere with NFL games. It has been a tradition, so the tradition continues.

This year, the Rose Bowl college football game was played, with Stanford Cardinals against Wisconsin Badgers. Stanford beat Wisconsin, ending the game with a score of 20-14. It is Stanford’s first time winning the Rose Bowl since 1972.

Before the game, comes the parade.  A new president is elected annually by the Tournament of Roses. The president picks the theme for the following year, and a Grand Marshal is being chosen.  This year, President Sally Bixby chose Jane Goodall, who is known for studying wild chimpanzees for the past forty-five years. She travels an average of 300 days annually.

President Sally Bixby picked the theme, “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!” based on the title by Dr. Suess and stated,“The theme can be interpreted as a celebration of accomplishment, discovery, and travel of course, but equally valid to its implicit call to action. We think Dr. Goodall’s life story is a testament to the sense of adventure and openness to possibility that this phrase suggests.” (Pasadena Tournament January 2013 p. 23)

Going to see the Rose Parade is a really fun experience. There were 935 volunteers (not including those who help with decorating the floats), 42 floats, 23 marching bands, and 21 equestrian units this year. There were also some special things that happened at the parade. For example, the float that a returning soldier (He was fighting in Afghanistan.)was riding on stopped in the middle of the parade. He surprised his wife and four-year- old son. His son ran to embrace him when he saw him. They haven’t seen each other for seven months. Together, they climbed back on the float. Also, there was a wedding for a lucky couple on the Love Float provided by Farmers Insurance.

A lot of people like to be in an enthusiastic crowd to start the New Year. An extra bonus for going to the Rose Parade would be that you could smell the fragrance of the flowers.

After the parade, the floats are parked at Victory Park at the end of the route.  There, spectators may take a closer look at the floats up to a week later.

Overall, the Rose Bowl and Parade is a wonderful way to celebrate the New Year.  Happy 2013!

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