2nd Judging

The 2nd Judging took place very early in the morning on New Year's Eve. It seemed like we had just gotten home from the barn and it was time to head back again. Happily although it was quite chilly out, which is good for the flowers, the forecast now was for good weather the day of the parade. One less thing to worry about!

Float in parking lot

The float was safely towed back to the train parking lot. A tremendous amount of progress had been made since it was there the day before.

Man and beer

Our beer drinker has come quite a way in one day. Yesterday his beer stein was a bare stein; now it's completely decorated, with the official symbol of the Tournament of Roses added as a special touch.

Oktoberfest sign

Not everything was 100% done, which was fine as we still had the rest of the day to get the float ready for the tow to Pasadena. Here you can see how some of the letters on the title sign are yet to be done. Lots of little beans will be applied by hand to complete the sign.

City of Burbank sign

One end of the giant beer barrel swung open to provide a doorway for the crew that would be inside the float during the parade. They said they loved this part of the design; usually they have to crawl inside through a narrow hatch. Looking at this now I guess we could have made the lettering bigger for Burbank, but we never got any complaints from the city about it.

Demonstration for the judges

When the judges arrived we fired up the float with all of the animation, including puffs of smoke from the squirrel's horns and the pouring beer. The band played and the dancers, well, they danced. It was the first time all of this had been done together and it all worked perfectly.


After the judges left the dance troupe posed for a group shot in front of the float. They had a very long day ahead of them tomorrow as they would be dancing for several miles while the float made it's way through Pasadena.

Back to the barn

The float was then carefully driven back to the barn for the rest of the decorating. This part may look easy but the driveway has enough of an incline that the float would bottom out as it came up from the street unless steel plates were used to take out the initial dip. Then the poor driver has to back this thing up guided solely by vocal cues from the outside observers. It was nerve-wracking to watch every time but they pulled it off without a hitch.

Everything went as planned - in fact, I think we were done a few hours ahead of schedule. We then headed home to get some sleep as we would be off to Pasadena to see the parade way too early in the morning.

More about the design and building of the float