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Burbank float volunteers get ‘Stompin’ Good Time’ ready for decorating

With the Rose Parade just a little more than a month away, members of the Burbank Tournament of Roses Assn. are wrapping up the construction phase of their 2019 float and preparing it for decorating next month.

During a recent Wednesday at the float site at 123 W. Olive Ave., volunteers were busy working on various tasks to complete the new float, titled “Stompin’ Good Time,” on schedule.

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The theme for the 2019 parade is “The Melody of Life,” with the grand marshal being Chaka Khan.

Some volunteers were fabricating pieces of metal sheets to look like musical notes, while others were meticulously finishing the metal frame around the float’s chassis to prepare it for foam work this coming week.

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Bob Hutt, the association’s construction chair, said volunteers were a little behind schedule constructing the float because of a shortage of welders this year.

He added that members of the South Pasadena Tournament of Roses Assn. were kind enough to help with the welding.

However, Hutt said he was confident construction of the float and the characters riding atop it will be completed in time for the decorating team to do its work next month.

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“This is not the furthest behind we’ve ever been,” he said. “I have every confidence that the float will be complete by first judging in December. Once all the characters are made and the float is judged, then it’s all decoration.”

Brian Cozakos, a longtime volunteer and designer of Burbank’s 2019 float, shared Hutt’s sentiments, adding that he isn’t worried about lagging behind a bit.

“I have full faith in the staff — all the welders and the workers — and they’ll get it done on time,” Cozakos said. “I’ve been around them for 24 years, so I know what they’re capable of doing.”

Cozakos recently moved to Tehachapi for his job as a correctional officer and has been unable to directly help the organization with the float, but it doesn’t mean that he hasn’t been paying attention to its progress.

He gets updates from his mother, Linda Cozakos, who is the association’s decoration chair, almost every day.

While the construction team is finishing up with the build, Linda Cozakos and her decoration team are standing by and waiting to get started on the float.

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She said most of the dry materials have been processed and prepared. The only items left to order are the fresh flowers.

With this float being the 44th one she and her family have worked on, Linda Cozakos said this year’s float is near and dear to her because it was designed by her son.

In addition to being one of the designers of the float, she said her son will be walking alongside as it travels down Colorado Boulevard in Pasadena on New Year’s Day, acting as its liaison.

Linda Cozakos is familiar with that experience because she was the first person in the parade’s history to design a float and be its liaison, which she did in 2016.

“I’m so honored for him because he’ll hear all the cheering and the comments from folks along the route,” she said. “I think that would just give such a burst of pride for him.”

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