Thousands of people will watch South Pasadena's self-built float make its way through The Rose Parade January 1.
Excitement leading up to the event is infectious, and some community members will spend most of the year preparing.
Just ask creative couple Richard Carlow and Eugenia Chen.
Owners of C2C-Studio, the South Pas residents were recruited about five years ago by South Pas Chamber of Commerce President Scott Feldmann to work on float design.
"South Pasadena has such a rich heritage —just the history alone and the tradition—it's really a cut above the rest compared to a lot of other cities," said Chen.
That rich history served as inspiration behind the husband-wife duo's first float in 2009.
The theme that year was 'A Cut Above The Rest': "[The float] paid homage to when the city was first founded ... the red trolleys ... the soda fountain, the Rialto theatre, the library...," explained Carlow.
In 2011, the design team felt it was time to ask others to step up to the plate.
"We are good at what we do, but that's not the point. We want to get the community more involved," said Chen.
And the collaborative efforts soon paid off. South Pas took home the Fantasy Award in 2012, thanks to Julie Smith's lively design:
A New Year
The 2013 parade theme is "Oh, The Places You'll Go!" named after the well-known Doctor Seuss book.
Resident Matthew Whaling's will represent South Pas this year as the oldest self-built float in the parade. An art student at Biola University, he says his rendering of a sailboat floating on books correlates with his studies: "All I do is paint and read books—it is pretty awesome."
Some of his original elements, however, will be changed for logistical purposes.
To see the evolution of his concept, see the attached drawings.
"I'll be a part of some of the design choices, but at the same time, I have to be humble about it. ... I've never worked with flowers before; I'm not a florist," he said.
While the actual construction process of the float began in April, it's not quite over yet.
"If all goes as planned, we will be done with all of the dry decoration before Christmas, which will allow us all to focus on the floral elements and make the finished float really shine on January 1, 2013," said Construction Chair
"And hopefully bring home another award for South Pasadena!"
To help with float construction, drop by War Memorial Park Wednesdays from 5 to 10 p.m.
Patch Asks: What do you think of this year's float design? Will you help build it?