2016 Glendale Rose Float

The 2016 Glendale Rose Float’s theme is “Getting There is Half the Fun!” The 55 foot float features Glendale’s City bird, the Peacock, adorned with the City logo’s swirls on its beautiful tail. It leads the way, followed by various modes of transportation (locomotive, vintage airplane, bicycles and classic cars) representing our history and our journey into the future. The float incorporates historical Glendale landmarks like Brand Library and the Grand Central Air Terminal where Amelia Earhart flew and Charles Lindbergh, piloted the nation’s first regularly scheduled coast to coast flight from Grand Central’s runway. 14 Riders will have the opportunity to ride the Float on New Year’s Day!

Glendale Rose Float 2016 Design Theme

100 Plus Years of Glendale Rose Floats

The Tournament of Roses parade began in 1890, when Pasadena residents paraded their flower bedecked carriages.

The first recorded entry from Glendale was in 1911, with a horse-drawn float featuring a miniature reproduction of the new Glendale (named Union) High School on Harvard and Louise.

Tournament of Roses 1895

The Chobe Years

A string of prize winning floats, all designed by city employee, L. W. Chobe, began in 1920 with a miniature bungalow representing the many bungalows then being built in Glendale. His 1923 peacock design with a long tail extending the bird to 52 feet, won First prize and a Sweepstakes award, the first for the city.

Sid Grauman was so impressed that he displayed the float in his Egyptian Court in Hollywood. When Chobe died just a few days after the 1930 parade, his wife Georgia, took over. Her 1931 entry highlighted the ancient Olympic Games, in preparation for the 1932 Olympics the following year, which took the Sweepstakes award.

Glendale Rose Float 1911

Glendale Rose Float 1923

The Story of the Seal

The flag’s background was buff-colored to suggest sunshine, while an amethyst blue border echoed the surrounding hills. Across the shield in large white letters was “Glendale,” below that “California” and underneath, on a ribbon design, the legend “The Jewel City.” At the top of the shield was the American eagle, as described by the Sept. 8, 1924, Glendale Daily Press.

After the new flag was unveiled at a City Council meeting, the council voted to incorporate the peacock into the city’s seal and do away with the star that had been adopted after incorporation. On the shield, a peacock in all its gorgeous coloring posed against a background suggesting royal purple.

City of Glendale Seal

The Flood of 1933-1934

The flood didn’t stop our float team! Rain began falling on New Year’s Eve and by New Year’s morning, had brought destruction to many parts of Glendale. The float, then constructed in Glendale, had to go down San Fernando Road, across at Van de Kamps to York Blvd, and then through South Pasadena.

Glendale Rose Float 1934

The War Years

With the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, the U.S. Army decreed there would be no parade and no football game in Pasadena. Orange Grove Boulevard was quiet for the first time in the Tournament of Roses fiftyplus years. After the war’s end, in January, 1946 The city’s Victory theme, with a giant V’’ for Victory topped by a globe and the dove of peace, won first prize in class A.

Glendale Rose Float 1946

The Coleman Years

Samuel Coleman, son of famed float designer Isabella Coleman, designed prize-winning floats in the 1960s. His 1966 float depicted the colorful history of ancient Persia, featured Giant peacocks (with thousands of vanda orchids forming the great curling tails). His 1972 “Winter Wonderland,’’ won the Sweepstakes award for a horsedrawn sleigh traveling over a bridge. Dodger pitcher Don Sutton was on board.

Glendale Rose Float 1966

Proposition 13 Nearly Fells the Float

1979 Proposition 13 put a major crimp in the city’s rose float funds, but business organizations responded to the float crisis with major contributions. The pattern continues today, with community groups coming to the fore when the city’s finances were stretched too far.

Glendale Rose Float 1972

That Pattern Continues Today

For over the 100 plus years of our rose float the city has generously led the way, organizing and funding the float with help from volunteers. But, again over the years, the city has sometimes withdrawn funding due to financial stresses. It is in years such those, that the community has stepped up and shown its support.

This is one of those years.

2016 and Beyond

The Glendale City Council unanimously approved the construction contract for the 2016 Rose Parade Float. The council made it clear that due to anticipated financial conditions in the coming years this may be the last year that the city will be in a position to do so. We have one year to prove to the city, the community, and everyone that we are able to restore the honor of Glendale in the Tournament of Roses Parade. Thank you for your support.

Glendale Rose Float 2014