Rose Parade Float Announced | South Pasadena’s Design for 2019

“Three Little Birds,” featuring a Bob Marley hit song, selected as South Pasadena’s float in the 2019 Rose Parade

GRAPHIC: Design and Rendering by Mike Mera |

Singer Bob Marley will be reminding millions around the world on January 1, 2019 to not “worry about a thing, cause every little thing is gonna be alright.”

Those lyrics from Marley’s hit song “Three Little Birds” will be heard blaring down Colorado Boulevard in Pasadena on New Year’s Day as part South Pasadena’s float in the 130th Rose Parade.

“Three Little Birds,” South Pasadena’s entry, fits nicely with the parade’s overall theme, The Melody of Life,” selected by Tournament of Roses President Gerald Freeny.

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“Itcelebrates music, the universal language,” said Freeny. “Music has the power to not only bring us together but take us back to memories and moments as nothing else can. Rhythm, melody, harmony and color all come together to create the soundtrack that defines our lives.

In keeping with the theme, South Pasadena’s float will feature three little birds resting on the neck of a guitar, joined by a drum, tambourine, keyboard and microphone to symbolize some of the instruments used during the reggae scene in Marley’s day.

“We’re going to make the guitar look exactly like Marley’s,” explained Chris Colburn, SPTOR’s construction chair. “Our floats in the past have been kind of cute, so this year we’re going out of our comfort zone. We’re stepping out and going for something more meaningful.”

Colburn said he’s looking forward to working with the float’s rendering artist Mike Mera as the float goes from concept and design to a finished product that will be viewed by thousands along the parade route and millions more watching on television around the world.

“Mike is really going to enjoy watching his design come to life,” explained Colburn. “It’s a really cool feeling to watch your intellectual property come to a physical fruition.”

Colburn’s crew has already begun working on the float, ensuring the engine and chassis are checked and ready to go. Next comes construction on the float’s foundation before natural products and roses are applied to finish off the task.

Some communities, including South Pasadena, continue the long tradition of volunteer-designed and constructed selfbuilt Rose Parade floats. Other self-builts include La Cañada, Burbank, Downey, Sierra Madre, and Cal Poly University.

The South Pasadena Tournament of Roses Committee meets monthly throughout the year on the first Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. in the City Council Chambers at City Hall.

“We’re always looking for help,” stressed SPTOR President Courtney Dunlap. “We encourage people to join us at our meetings and get involved in supporting our float. There’s a job for everyone.”