Campus: Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo -- December 23, 2003

Cal Polys' Rose Float Entry To Be Ninth in Tournament of Roses Parade Lineup Jan. 1

The two Cal Polys' entry in the 2004 Tournament of Roses Parade has an enviable ninth-place position in the Jan. 1 lineup of floats, assuring millions of viewers worldwide will see the work done by students from the San Luis Obispo and Pomona campuses.

The universities' float, titled "Bob's Barnacle Band," fits right into the 115th Rose parade theme "Music, Music, Music." This will mark the schools' 56th consecutive entry -- unique because it is the only Rose Float built entirely by students. The students have won awards 44 times.

The approximately two-hour parade begins at 8 a.m. along Pasadena's Colorado Boulevard. The Rose Parade will be broadcast locally on ABC, NBC and CBS, and internationally to 28 countries. The parade will feature marching bands from throughout the nation, floral floats and high-stepping equestrian units.

This year Cal Poly's float depicts a sea-creature band playing on a sunken pirate ship led by a skeleton conductor.

"The pirate ship -- once a mighty vessel -- is now broken in two, providing the perfect stage for a band of eccentric creatures and their instruments," said Rachelle Kam, Rose Float committee chair at the San Luis Obispo campus. "As the starfish singer makes its entrance from a large clamshell, the band's audience of fish and crustaceans frolic and dance among treasure chests, barrels, coral and seaweed."

"Bob's Barnacle Band" stands 30-feet high, 18-feet wide and 55-feet long and is hydraulically powered. The students expect to use an estimated 17,000 roses, 550 bunches of mums and 300 bunches of carnations, in addition to other floral decorations such as lilies, liatris, Gerber daisies, gladiolas, iris, solidago, asters, freesia, sweat peas and baby's breath.

More than 1,000 volunteer decorators come together every year between Christmas and New Year's to decorate the Cal Poly float. The volunteers include Cal Poly students, faculty and staff members of the universities, family, alumni and friends.

The two Cal Poly university campuses, located approximately 225 miles apart, coordinate a year-round effort to complete the float for each year's parade. Throughout the 12-month period, committees from each campus work on the design and construction of their respective portion to ensure the float is built to specification.

Usually during the Thanksgiving break, the San Luis Obispo portion of the float is transported to the Pomona campus, where the two frames are united. Approximately the third week of December, the float is transported more than 30 miles from the Pomona campus to its assigned decorating site in Pasadena.

For more information about the Cal Poly Rose Float program, go to http://asi.calpoly.edu/rosefloat/ or call Amie Hammond, Associated Students Inc. program coordinator at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, at 756-1113.


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