Phoenix Decorating Co.
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Rose Parade floats in the making

Floats fill a huge work area at Phoenix Decorating in Pasadena. The company is building half of the 44 flower-covered behemoths that will be in the 2012 Rose Parade. (Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)
Morgan Smith, 17, of Temecula and Kyle Le, 18, of Riverside work on the Western Asset float. (Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)
Samantha Yin, 18, of Temple City helps create a float sponsored by RFD-TV. All three major builders of Rose Parade floats rely on volunteers to apply the decorations. (Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)
Each float in the Rose Parade must be covered in unaltered organic material, such as flowers and seeds. (Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)
Austin Fagrell, 16, of Fallbrook, Calif., works on the Rotary International float. (Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)
Volunteers help with the Western Asset float. (Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)
Sunita Boddu of San Clemente works on the float sponsored by Kinect for Xbox 360. (Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)
Chris Lofthouse, president of Phoenix Decorating, says he counts on 12,000 to 13,000 volunteers per week in December. The 2012 Rose Parade is Jan. 2. (Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)