The 128th Tournament of Roses Parade was held on Monday in Pasadena, CA. The highlight of the New Year’s Day parade are the gigantic, colorful floats that are each decorated with tens of thousands of flowers. The Tournament of Roses Association gives awards to floats in various categories to celebrate their beauty, design, and intrinsic uniqueness.
See a gallery of highlights from the entire parade here.
Hundreds of thousands of people watched the parade on the route while millions more tuned in at home. Besides the floats, the Rose Bowl Parade featured marching bands from across the country, singers, dancers, equestrian units, the parade’s Grand Marshals, this year’s inductees to the Rose Bowl Hall of Fame, and the Rose Queen and her court.
ABC listed 24 float award winners from the Rose Parade on their local channel for Los Angeles news. There are multiple categories recognizing all kinds of achievements for the floats. Some are broad and subjective, like the Fantasy Trophy. This award is given out for “most outstanding display of fantasy and imagination.” BDK, A Singpoli Affiliate, won this award for their float titled “The Monkey King: Journey to Success.” The float featured an enormous rendition of the Monkey King, a popular character in China and other Asian countries, who goes on a magical journey with his friends.
Other categories are slightly more restrictive. The Founders’ Trophy is awarded to the “most beautiful float built and decorated by community or organization volunteers.” The winner is pictured in the photo above. This float, called “A New Leaf” was built by volunteers and members of the community from Cal Poly University.
A few of the categories are even more restrictive. For example, the Governor’s Trophy is given to the float that best depicts “life in California.” This float must somehow relate to the Golden State, where the parade is held. This year’s winner was “The Gold Rush” by the Downey Rose Float Association.
Another category in the same vein is the International Trophy for “most beautiful entry from outside the United States and District of Columbia.” China Airlines won this award for their float “Return To the Beauty of Taiwan.” It featured smiling dancers waving multicolored fans.
Float designers do not have to rely purely on an impressive size to make an impression with the judges and win an award. Two awards are given out to floats that must be 35′ and under in length. The Tournament Volunteers Trophy is awarded to the float with the “Best floral design of Parade theme 35′ in length and under.” This year’s winner was “Be Your Own Knight,” by The Torrance Rose Float Association.
The winner of the Princess’ Trophy, pictured above, is the “Most beautiful float 35′ and under.” The Rotary Rose Parade Float Committee, Inc. won the Princess’ Trophy for their float, “Doing Good in the World.” The design of this float, with its enormous pink dragon, was meant to empower the Rotary Foundation on their 100th anniversary of service. Members of the Rotary Foundation travel the world and complete service projects for people in need.
The Craftsman Trophy for “exceptional achievement in showmanship and dramatic impact” was given to the float pictured above. This award is only given to floats that exceed 55′ in length. Netflix made it and called their float “Soar Beyond Imagination.” The different categories and qualifications make it possible for community organizations, companies, volunteers, and paid float designers to all contribute their skills to the floats in the parade and have a chance at a coveted award.
The theme of this year’s Rose Parade was “Echoes of Success” to emphasize how success and involvement resonate throughout a community. The organizations and people who worked on the floats spread their dedication and talent through the parade. Ideally, the success of the parade is a reflection of success to come throughout our communities.
[Featured Image by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images]