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Rose Parade Float Maker

Creative director of Paradiso Parade Floats Charles Meier, 34, right, introduces his float to float judges at the Rose Bowl on Sunday.  (Christina House / For the Times)
Creative director of Paradiso Parade Floats Charles Meier, right, tests the animation from the operator’s seat on his float at the Rose Bowl on Sunday.  (Christina House / For the Times)
Volunteers help with the city of San Gabriel float at the Rose Bowl on Sunday.  (Christina House / For the Times)
Cindy Aronberg of Santa Monica and her children Kate, 3, and Leo, 5, right, watch as flowers are placed for the city of San Gabriel float at the Rose Bowl on Sunday.  (Christina House / For The Times)
Creative director of Paradiso Parade Floats Charles Meier, center, works on his float at the Rose Bowl on Sunday. (Christina House / For The Times)
Volunteers Synthia Martinez, right, and her mother, Marisol Mendoza, below, help with the city of San Gabriel float at the Rose Bowl on Sunday. (Christina House / For The Times)
Charles Meier, the youngest designer in Rose Parade history, designed his first float when he was 13. He won a design contest for the city of South Pasadena. The float, titled “Star Stuck!” depicts two aliens playing tug of war with a spaceship. Meier rode on the float as an astronaut during the 1992 Rose Parade. (Stephen Meier)
Charles Meier pulled his first all-nighter when he was 11 years old. His parents found him asleep in a flower box on Dec. 31, 1989. It was the night before final judging for the 1990 Rose Parade. Meier, a volunteer, had been running around for hours helping float decorators fill vials of water, scrape seeds and glue last-minute details. Exhausted, he finally crawled into a box that still smelled of orchids. (Stephen Meier)
Designed by Charles Meier for Sierra Madre, Bollywood: “Bollywood Dreams,” 2009. Winner of Lathrop K. Leishman Trophy (most beautiful entry -- noncommercial). This is a wideshot of the float. (Stephen Meier)
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