Search This Blog

Friday, December 20, 2013

Mystery History -- Solved!

Karen wins with her 3:57 p.m. guess "Looks like someone dressed as Aladdin, Ali Baba or Sinbad contemplating the place where he will sit on a Rose Parade float, which hasn't been covered with flowers yet."

In the Jan. 2, 1933, photo above, a young man in an east Indian or middle eastern costume (it's hard to tell) covers a seat on a float for the 44th Rose Parade.

Unfortunately I couldn't find which float it was. The photo description simply states, "Young man in costume constructing a Tournament of Roses Float, Pasadena, 1933." Of course he wasn't constructing the float -- he was doing some finishing touches.

There are photos of some of the 1933 floats and dignitaries here.

The theme of the parade that year was Fairy Tales in Flowers. Mary Pickford was the grand marshal -- the first woman to be selected for this honored role. . .

. . .and Dorothy Edwards (sitting at top) was the Rose Queen.

The parade making its way down Colorado Boulevard:

Fast forward 81 years and the theme of the Jan. 1, 2014, Rose Parade is "Dreams Come True."

Vin Scully will be the grand marshal (which means he'll also toss the coin at the opening of the Rose Bowl Game). . .

. . .and the Rose Queen is Anna Marie Acosta (center).

Do you have your tickets?!

Oh, and be sure to stop by one of the float-decorating areas to see the flowers and other plant materials being painstakingly put on by hundreds of volunteers.

Do you know there was one year when the Rose Parade was canceled? On Dec. 14, 1941 -- one week after the bombing of Pearl Harbor -- it was decided that the 1942 Rose Parade would not take place for reasons of national defense and civilian protection. The Rose Bowl Game, between Duke and Oregon State, was played on the opposite side of the country in Durham, N.C. The streets of Pasadena must have been eerily quiet that day.

On Jan. 1, 2012, it was the thrill of a lifetime when I rode on the Kiwanis International float in the Rose Parade thanks to my wonderful friends.


  1. I remember when you rode in the parade!

  2. Vinnie is gonna be at the Rose Bowl? You mean he's gonna announce the game?!
    And, congrats to The Hiker from up north.

    1. CP, the grand marshal always tosses the coin at the start of the game. One of the long-time traditions!