Volunteers drive Burbank float, start to finish

More than 200 volunteers are expected to flock to the Burbank Water and Power campus in the coming days to lay 12,000 roses on the city’s 45-foot-long, volunteer-built float for the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade.

Keeping in line with this year’s theme — “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!” — Burbank will take parade-goers on a “deep-sea adventure.”

Steven Edward — the vice president of the Burbank Rose Float Assn. who’s been involved in creating the city’s float since 1990 — said he loves the annual challenge and the lifelong friends he makes along the way.

“Every year is fresh,” Edward said. “We get together [and say], ‘How are we going to take this black-and-white drawing and make it into this 3-D vehicle?’”

This year’s float features a young girl piloting a submarine that’s being pulled by three seahorses.

“It’s going to come to life,” Edward said, adding that the float will feature a puffer fish “that actually puffs,” an octopus tour guide and a sea turtle.

Mission Viejo resident Richard Burrow designed the float.

Yearlong fundraising efforts and grant funds are financing the $82,000 float, Edward said.

“That’s a very cheap cost because there are no labor charges,” Edward said, adding that Burbank is one of six completely volunteer-built floats.

Burbank’s floats have nabbed awards in the last three parades — in January, the city’s “Dream Machine” float brought home the coveted Mayor’s Trophy.

Edward hopes that tradition lives on.

“I think we have a good possibility of taking home a trophy,” he said.

The float will be on display at the corner of Olive Avenue and Glenoaks Boulevard in Burbank from Jan 3. to 6.

For information on how to volunteer, visit www.burbankrosefloat.com.


Follow Alene Tchekmedyian on Google+ and on Twitter: @atchek.


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