Bands a hit at Burbank on Parade

Deloreans, the Jetsons and remote-controlled robots were a few of the glimpses into the future featured in the 33rd annual Burbank on Parade, which took place Saturday morning along Olive Avenue.

The marching bands were a hit among several spectators who came out to see Burbank on Parade, including Kim Hall, a Burbank resident who brought her son Bradford and his three friends, all students at Bret Harte Elementary.

PHOTOS: Burbank on Parade 2014

They were seated at their traditional spot about 50 feet west of the McDonald’s, where, per tradition, Hall said, they would head afterward for lunch.

“I like the horsies and the Burbank marching band,” Hall said.

The theme for the parade was “City of the Future,” selected by the Burbank on Parade committee members. The annual event originated in 1945 as a celebration marking the end of World War II, and was revived in 1981 by residents.

This year’s grand marshal was Rebecca Mieliwocki, a seventh-grade English teacher at Luther Middle School who was named the 2012 National Teacher of the Year.

The parade – which drew a crowd of approximately 5,000, according to parade organizers — kicked off at 11 a.m., traveling for a mile east along Olive Avenue from Keystone Street to Lomita Street, ending at George Izay Park.

The two Deloreans in the parade came from Star Cars, a Hollywood-based rental company of famous vehicles, along with two actors portraying Doc Brown from the “Back to the Future” trilogy, while clients with BCR — a nonprofit that works with the developmentally disabled — dressed in costumes inspired by the 1960s animated series “The Jetsons.”

Celebrities in the parade included Radio Centro 93.9 disc jockey El Gato Volador, and actress and author Masiela Lusha, who played “Carmen” in “The George Lopez Show.”

This year’s parade also featured a few government officials, including Rep. Adam Schiff, Burbank Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy, schools Supt. Jan Britz and school board members.

The parade culminated at the “Food Court” in the parking lot of the Josyln Adult Center, where food trucks lined up starting at 9:30 a.m. for the public and offered gourmet waffles, Argentinian food and Hawaiian shaved ice, along with music and prize giveaways by Radio Centro 93.9.

The Food Court was also where the awards ceremony took place, awarding trophies to the top parade entries, including first prize in the novelty act category to a group of Irish jig dancers, first place in the commercial novelty category to Fitness is an Art, and first place in the noncommercial novelty category BCR. In the civic category, First Robotic earned first place.

In the floats category, Media West Realty earned first prize for the commercial category, while the Burbank Historical Society earned first place for noncommercial floats and the local Girl Scout troop for the civic category.

In total, about 80 acts — a mix of floats, performers and equestrians — took part in the parade, about the same number as past years, said Trudy Swearingen, secretary for the Burbank on Parade committee.

Burbank On Parade, a nonprofit organization run entirely by volunteers, puts on the parade each year with support from the city of Burbank, Burbank Department of Water and Power, Police and Fire departments, Parks and Recreation, Burbank Unified School District and private businesses and individuals.

The organization held a fundraiser at Flappers Comedy Club earlier this year, along with two to three smaller ones to raise the approximately $40,000 it took to put on the parade.

FOR THE RECORD: A previous version of this story incorrectly named Flappers Comedy Club as Flappy's.

It was the first year of attendance for co-workers Kate Enge, 26, of Burbank and Tanya Cabral, 40, of North Hollywood.

“Tanya invited me and I love parades,” Enge said. “I’m a huge fan of the bands.”

Cabral’s favorite, meanwhile, was the Burbank Airport Authority’s fire truck, which sprayed water out on the street and on some spectators, though Enge and Cabral stayed dry.

“That was a lot of fun,” she said.


Follow Sameea Kamal on Twitter: @SameeaKamal.


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