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  • Writer's pictureJefferson Graham

Tournament of Roses Parade float preview – #Photowalk

Pasadena Tournament of Roses parade

The Tournament of Roses parade is around the corner, and we got a Photowalk sneak peek at the workerbees putting the finishing touches on the floats that soar down Colorado Blvd. in Pasadena on New Year’s Day.

We visited Fiesta Parade Floats in Irwindale, where 11 of this year’s 40 parade floats are produced, from such sponsors as the UPS Store and  Chipotle. Fiesta, according to the company, “has the highest prize-winning rate over the last 32 years in the Rose Parade industry.”

So a fun place to visit!

Our general impression of the floats from years past–all built by roses.

But not exactly. They’re actually adorned by them. Underneath are plants, seaweeds, seeds, bark, vegetables, or nuts, as our visit to the Fiesta facility demonstrated. The roses are added at the last minute, a day or two before the parade, for the finishing touches.

You can see more of our behind the scenes Tournament of Roses float Photowalk here:

Pasadena Photowalk


Before the roses are added on, different plant based decorations go on the floats. In this case, it’s split peas on a tiger for a float for the 2020 Tournament of Roses parade in Pasadena.

Look at those peas on the eyes!

Split peas before they get put on the floats.

Busy at work decorating

Decorating the floats at the Tournament of Roses parade, at the warehouse facility in Irwindale, California.

Creating a float

Getting a float made in Pasadena. Photo by Jan Schrieber


We did find roses, plenty of them, in the back of the warehouse, awaiting their floats. This was a collection headed to the Chipotle float.

It’s too late to volunteer to help decorate the floats, but keep this link in mind for next year: Below, if you haven’t caught it yet, please check out our Pasadena Photowalk, which goes down the parade route to show you the best photo spots in the City of Roses.

See more photos from the float prep, from Jefferson Graham’s Photowalk series and check out the gallery from our Pasadena Photowalk:

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