Everything’s Coming Up Roses [Part 1 of 4]

The Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, CA was at the top of our list and when our travels took us to the west coast of Canada the timing was perfect to continue down the coast into California for this New Year’s Day extravaganza.

We had researched coming to the parade – buying grandstand tickets for the parade viewing, finding RV parking, transportation routes in and out of the city, volunteering for float decorating, etc. The information is available, the dilemma is – where is the best viewing location? is the sun in our face or at our backs? how far out of the city are we? what roads are closed on parade day? where can we park? how does one volunteer to decorate? So many questions – so many different answers.

So, we started investigating Rose Parade Rally’s – and found one that offered everything we were looking for – and more – at an affordable price – all under the name of Sportscoach Owners International (SOI) – and this is their 34th annual Rose Parade Rally. Think of a “Rally” as an all inclusive resort for RV’s! Everything (meals, transportation, events, etc.) all included in 1 price.

Along with 150 other coaches we arrived at the Santa Anita Racetrack on Sunday, December 28th. We were instructed to come in with a full water tank (105 gallons) and empty grey & black tanks. This section of the parking lot had multiple generators and miles of electrical cable and outlets so everyone was hooked up with 30 amp service which is adequate when the weather is warmer! The really cool/cold evenings played havoc with the draw on electricity – continually tripping breakers; generators firing up constantly to heat up the coaches.

The set-up included a Rally kitchen and rendezvous/dining tent. The 1st night we had our Get Acquainted Cocktail Social and dinner – and we were among the youngest couples there!

Let the fun begin!

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  • Jeanne Koselek Armstrong

    Sounds like a lot of fun and you lucked out by joining this rally. Good for you. I look forward to the rest of this adventure. Sure was good talking with you last night. Love you and keep on enjoying your adventure and home on wheels.

  • Shannon

    The parade looked beautiful on TV – I can only imagine what it looked like in person! I am confused – did you just stay at the racetrack or actually watch a horse race?? Xoxo to you both!

    • Both! We were parked in the Gate 6 area of the horse track (a HUGE facility) – and then we had lunch and races on the 31st. The pic of the screen shows the coaches in the background and was taken from inside the clubhouse looking out. The other pics were taken on a walk with Gracie!

  • Helen Picken

    Wonderful stories (and beautifully written too!); keep ’em coming.
    xoxo

  • Jim Hanson

    We enjoyed watching the Rose Bowl Parade on TV even more than usual this year, because we knew that you two were there in person!