ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Holidays and Celebrations»
  • Common Holidays

Interesting Tidbits about the New Year’s Day Rose Parade

Updated on April 28, 2015

The Rose Parade, a New Year's Day tradition for the last 125 years, kicks off for 2014 at 8:00am.

This eagerly awaited California parade is an American festival complete with bands and horses and most notably, the floats filled with flowers. The parade is then followed by the football championship called the Rose Bowl.

Keep reading below for more interesting tidbits about the Rose Parade traditions.

Flickr Photo Credit: Prayitno

Flickr Photo Credit:  Beaverton Historical Society
Flickr Photo Credit: Beaverton Historical Society

Rose Parade History

The Tournament of Roses Association, which hosts the parade, was founded in 1890 and is now a nonprofit volunteer organization. Their headquarters are in Pasadena, California. The parade organizers work year round to pull together the magnificent January 1st spectacle.

The parade was originally started as an ode to the lovely weather in California during the winter. The original 1890 parade was fashioned after a festival in France called "The Battle of the Flowers." What started out as a small carriage procession with a few flowers has now turned into a parade that is televised in more than 200 countries. Just two years after the parade was born, it almost closed down. The winter of 1892 saw a severe winter storm that caused a shortage of roses. The directors almost changed the name to the "Orange Tournament" but changed their minds.

Flickr Photo Credit:    yausser
Flickr Photo Credit: yausser
Flickr Photo Credit: Kansas Sebastian
Flickr Photo Credit: Kansas Sebastian

Fabulous Flowered Floats!

The parade is now known worldwide for its flower-covered floats. In order to qualify under parade regulations, a float must be entirely covered in flowers. No space can be left undone. The only other materials that can show are leaves, bark or seeds. Before the parade, guests can purchase tickets to watch the floats being finished by professionals and volunteers. Anyone who will be in California during the weeks preceding the parade can sign up to be one of the float building volunteers. They may be asked to put individual stems in glass vials full of water. That's a task that can take hours upon hours and volunteers are glad to do it.

The parade now features animated creations that rival even the biggest amusement park rides. One year, a working roller coaster made its way down the parade route as a floral-covered float.

After the parade, the floats are parked along the intersections of Sierra Madre and Washington Boulevards in Pasadena. Pedestrians can get up close and see the handiwork of the float designers. They can also download the audio of a guided tour on their iPods and take a self-guided walk through the making of the floats.

Rose Parade Photo Gallery

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Flickr Photo Credit: Kansas SebastianFlickr Photo Credit: Kansas SebastianFlickr Photo Credit: kwcFlickr Photo Credit: Kansas SebastianFlickr Photo Credit: yausserFlickr Photo Credit: yausserFlickr Photo Credit: Tootsie's DadFlickr Photo Credit: Kansas Sebastian
Flickr Photo Credit: Kansas Sebastian
Flickr Photo Credit: Kansas Sebastian
Flickr Photo Credit: Kansas Sebastian
Flickr Photo Credit: Kansas Sebastian
Flickr Photo Credit: kwc
Flickr Photo Credit: kwc
Flickr Photo Credit: Kansas Sebastian
Flickr Photo Credit: Kansas Sebastian
Flickr Photo Credit: yausser
Flickr Photo Credit: yausser
Flickr Photo Credit: yausser
Flickr Photo Credit: yausser
Flickr Photo Credit: Tootsie's Dad
Flickr Photo Credit: Tootsie's Dad
Flickr Photo Credit: Kansas Sebastian
Flickr Photo Credit: Kansas Sebastian
Flickr Photo Credit:    yausser
Flickr Photo Credit: yausser

The Best of the Best

Many simultaneous events are going on around the Rose Parade. Single women are vying for the title of Rose Queen in the Royal Courts and the Grand Marshal is making his way to his seat of honor.

Of course, everyone is hoping to take home the stunning Rose Parade Trophy for best float in the parade.

Categories for the coveted award include best animated float, most humorous, best craftsmanship and most innovative, among others.

Flickr Photo Credit:   Kansas Sebastian
Flickr Photo Credit: Kansas Sebastian
Flickr Photo Credit:    rltdrl12
Flickr Photo Credit: rltdrl12

Other Happenings

The Rose Parade isn't the only thing going on during the first week of January. The Rose Bowl Game is a major attraction after the parade.

In the weeks before either of these two events, visitors can enjoy many other live events. Many people plan their vacations around this exciting time. Equestrian performances and marching bands from around the country are just two of the events that make up the week's festivals.

Need a New Year's Gift?

Celebrate New Year in style this year with this festive bouquet just for the occasion!

Available in 5, 7, 9, or 12 cookie arrangements,

Gourmet shortbread cookies are baked fresh and hand-decorated daily. Each cookie is approximately 4-5" tall! Your friends and family will be ready to ring in the new year with this delicious gift!

Happy New Year Gifts available at AAGiftsandBaskets.com.

Share your thoughts about the Rose Parade

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • LauraHofman profile image

      Laura Hofman 3 years ago from Naperville, IL

      I absolutely love the Rose Parade and look forward to it every year! The floats are so beautiful and creative. I especially like the HGTV broadcast as they describe all of the flowers and natural materials used to make the lovely themed floats.

    • joanhall profile image

      Joan Hall 6 years ago from Los Angeles

      Love the photos on your lens. Throwing some Squidoo Mardi Gras beads your way.

    • squid-janices7 profile image

      squid-janices7 6 years ago

      The floats are always so amazing. I watched a special on HGTV about how the floats are designed and constructed a few years ago and it is just crazy how much time and effort goes into each of the unique creations. Looking forward to watching it in a few days!

    • squid-pinkchic18 profile image

      squid-pinkchic18 6 years ago

      I always hear about it but I've never actually watched it! I have new years off though this year so maybe i'll be able to catch it :) Thanks for sharing!

    • kimmer1491 profile image

      Kim 6 years ago from Big Lake, MN

      Gorgeous photos, I would love to check out the floats in person but since I can't I will surely be watching it on TV in just a few days!!