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Rose Parade 2012: As weather heated up, crowd shed layers

January 2, 2012 | 11:27 am

Roy Rogers Palomino Riders
Attendees at this year’s Rose Parade had to shed layers to keep cool as the weather heated up.

The chilly night gave way to sunny skies in Pasadena, where many parade-goers slept overnight in sleeping bags and on air mattresses. By early morning, temperatures had reached 66 degrees.

“This is the best year for the weather,” said Daniel Powell, 52, who considers himself a parade veteran.

PHOTOS: 2012 Rose Parade

As a college student, Powell played the trombone in the parade with the USC marching band in 1979 and 1980. And he said he's attended the event every year for at least the last 25 years.

He recalled one time when thunderstorms brought rain showers. He was in the grandstands then, as he has been for the last decade.

“I just can’t stay away,” said the resident of Solana Beach in San Diego County. 

Powell ran to the parade site Monday morning with participants from the California Triathlon.  He went by himself after family members refused to wake up early for the event.

Girl Scout Troop 9491 camped overnight with their families, a first for the group, which has helped decorate floats for the last six years.

“It was so warm that it was the year to do it,” said Liz Dailey, 45, of South Pasadena, a troop co-leader.

One of the members, Lorie Meza, 12, rode in the Girl Scouts parade float that commemorated the organization’s centennial. 

The 123rd Annual Rose Parade drew close to 900,000 visitors, officials said. The number was slightly smaller than past years because the parade was held on Jan. 2 instead of the traditional Jan. 1.  Rules dictate the parade is not held on Sundays.

Sue Murphy, a first-timer at the parade, traveled from Saco, Maine, with her husband.  She held a banner that read “Happy Trails from Maine,” a message for Roy Rogers, the late singing cowboy who was celebrated at the parade.

The 60-year-old grew up watching the Rose Parade on television and was eager to experience it in person.

“Oh, my God, I’ve been waiting my whole life to get here,” she said. “I love it all, the whole spirit of the marching bands, the arts, the plants. It’s unbelievable."


Video: Building a Rose Parade float

PHOTOS: 2012 Rose Parade

FULL COVERAGE: 2012 Rose Parade

Rose Parade 2012: Thousands thrill to floats, marching bands

-- Rosanna Xia and Dalina Castellanos in Pasadena and Angel Jennings in Los Angeles

Photo: Members of the Roy Rogers 100th Anniversary Palomino Riders during the 123rd Rose Parade in Pasadena. Credit: Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times.