You Can Still Smell the Roses

By Michael Berick

rose parade

Take a closer look at the amazing floats from the Tournament of Roses Parade. PHOTO COURTESY TOURNAMENT OF ROSES PARADE

Going to see the Tournament of Roses Parade is a memorable – and daunting – experience. To get a curbside view, you must arrive before dawn, if not earlier. If you want a reserved seat, tickets cost $55-$100 and you have to snag them before they sell out. (By the way, tickets for the 2019 parade will be available at www.sharpseating.com Feb. 1.)  

However, you can get a great view of the floats without the fuss by visiting “Post Parade: A Showcase of Floats.” After the parade is over, the floats are parked on Washington and Sierra Madre boulevards, and the public can view them from 1-5 p.m. Jan. 1 and 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Jan. 2.  

It’s a lovely, family-friendly opportunity to check out the prize-winning entrants and marvel at the extraordinary craftsmanship involved in creating these colorful floral mobiles. Tournament volunteers – known as “White Suiters” – will be there to answer questions.   

It’s best to purchase tickets in advance at www.sharpseating.com. However, tickets will also be available at park-and-ride sites at Pasadena City College (1570 E. Colorado Blvd.) and Rose Bowl Stadium Lot B (Jan. 2 only). The post-parade area does tend to get crowded, and Jan. 2 typically is the less-jammed day. The Showcase of Floats covers around 2.5 miles, and you should allow at least two hours to see everything. Wearing comfortable shoes is a must.  

You can bring in a small quantity of food and non-alcoholic beverages, and there are free water stations and food available for purchase. Animals (except service animals) aren’t allowed in. Strollers are permitted, but skateboards, bikes and similar wheeled vehicles are not.  

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