Los Angeles News

Rose Parade floats get finishing touches from volunteers

Thursday, December 29, 2011
With the Rose Parade just days away, volunteers are working around the clock to ensure the floats are picture perfect. This years Rose Parade will feature Hollywood blockbuster movie floats, including Star Trek and Transformers.

Volunteers of all ages festoon every square inch of each Rose Parade float with detailed natural coverings. One missed spot could mean disqualification.

"A detail that is not always necessarily caught by the cameras is when you see eyes that are being done on animals that have four different materials just in a small little eye or the different types of grasses that are actually combed to be given a nice color texture," said Fiest Parade Floats President Tim Estes.

Of the 44 floats in the parade, 11 of them are made at Fiesta Parade Floats. From rice to flowers to feathers, from high in the scaffolding to down low at the base of the floats, the intricate craftsmanship is what makes them world-famous.

"This is one of these things that you watch for years and years and years, you sit in your living room, and you say, 'I wanna do it,' so here I am doing it, I'm so excited," said volunteer Janis Milman.

In Pasadena, the Donate Life float holds extra-special meaning, as loved ones make the pilgrimage, some from as far away as Taiwan, to place 3,000 roses on the float.

"The people that come here today have loved ones who have passed away, but in their passing, gave the gift of life to others so that they could live, and this is a very special way for them to honor them during the holiday season," said Donate Life's Bryan Stweart.

Organizers say volunteers are now working in 16-hour shifts to get the last touches on the floats. Some of the floats produced at the Fiesta Parade Floats facility include a float with bulldogs surfing in a wave pool and the Natural Balance float, which is the longest and heaviest float in Rose Parade history.

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rose parade, los angeles news, rudabeh shahbazi
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