Last weekend Matt and I experienced some Rose Bowl madness here in Pasadena. There is not only a lot of excitement on game day, but also in the weeks of preparation.
We both work on a street called Colorado Avenue, which is also the main street of the parade route. Since the sidewalks become so packed with spectators the businesses shut down for the day to avoid chaos. This meant that we both scored the day off to enjoy the parade (and our anniversary!). The 24 hours before the parade involved a detailed preparation of the streets and sidewalks. In every possible open area along the road bleachers are assembled to house the coming spectators. As I walked to work the morning before the parade I got some shots of my store being fenced in! Some neighboring stores even went so far as to board up their storefronts completely. Crews cruised up and down the street setting up extra trash cans, unbolting newspaper stands from the sidewalks and sealing mailboxes with heavy-duty saran wrap. Finally, by late afternoon, the stage was set.
As night fell on parade eve, I biked down Colorado to check out the scene. I had heard stories of people camping out on the sidewalk the evening before the parade to claim their spots. I see people camp out for Black Friday each year, so camping out for the Rose Parade didn’t completely shock me. However, I did not anticipate how far some people would take it. I expected to see some people sitting in camping chairs and saving spots with tarps. However, as I rode down the street I passed crowds of people who appeared to have brought their living rooms with them! Air mattresses, fires, heat lamps and coolers lined the streets. People were playing cards, sitting around fires roasting marshmallows and watching movies on laptops plugged into generators! It was quite a sight and unfortunately, being on a bike, I wasn’t able to get many photos so you will have to take my word on it and let your imagination run wild.
On the morning of the parade we woke up, made some hot chocolae and set out down our block. It was fun to see others popping out of neighboring homes to join us as we made our way down the sidewalk. Continuing to get closer and closer, it seemed as though we were going to be able to get a decent view. Our street intersects Colorado and where the two meet we were able to nestle into a spot near the action! I was being quite a maniac, snapping photos of nearly everything that passed by. To spare you from boredom I narrowed down my collection to share with you some of the floats we liked best. Enjoy!